Monday, March 25, 2013

Nuts About Stuffed Honey Dates

Several months ago, I found an recipe for a special Pesach treat on the Neot Kedumin website that I've been excited about trying.   If you are unfamiliar to Pesach, we celebrate by fasting from leavened bread.  Matzah takes the place of flour, and creating tasty treats minus this common ingredient becomes part of the fun.  The challenges are increased when attending a Seder where guests keep kosher, separating milk and meat (which we will be doing  this year!).  This Stuffed Dates recipe is totally kosher for Pesach!

Dates are quite tasty as it is, but in honesty, what I was drawn to was the nostalgia in the description from the website...

Based on a recipe that was found written on a piece of clay in Egypt dated to approximately 1600 BCE, which coincides when our tradition holds that the Children of Israel were slaves in Egypt. Perhaps Joseph – or even Moses enjoyed this Egyptian sweet…

So...  Aviel, Devin and I made this ancient treat together!
  


Here's where we bought our dates at the Shuk. 


While Aviel was watching The Prince of Egypt, I pitted the dates... 


And finely chopped the walnuts.


Then we added a little water and mashed the dates to create a paste. 


Here we are working together... 


And it did take quite a bit of work! 


This is how the consistency of the paste looked after the addition of spices.


Next, Aviel dumped the chopped walnuts in the paste. 


Dumping is his favorite part! 


And we folded in the nuts. 


Next, things got a little sticky! I rolled the nutty paste into balls stuffed each one with an almond, then coated with honey - per instructions. Devin and I evaluated the balls and decided they might be easier to eat (avoiding sticky fingers) if we coated them with nuts, so....


Devin finely chopped some almonds, since my hands were dripping with honey and date paste!


And Aviel helped him roll the balls in the nuts. This was really fun for him!  (Pardon my dishes drying in the background. We're hand-washers around here.)


We then refrigerated the balls on some parchment paper until time to go!  They firmed up nicely. We will tote them to our Seder tonight, along with dairy-free mashed potatoes!  

Chag Sameach!  


***

Ingredients:
1 cup of dates
1 tsp. of cinnamon
½ tsp. of ground cardamom
½ cup of fresh walnuts
A plate of crushed almonds
Honey

Preparation:
• Remove pits from the dates, crush dates and add a little bit of water to create a paste.
• Add the spices and mix
• Crush the walnuts and add them to the mix
• Roll the paste mixture into small candy-sized balls, coat the balls with hot honey and stuff them with the almonds.
• Serve and enjoy!

*Our  slight change is that I used whole almonds to stuff, and rolled the balls in finely chopped almonds after coating in honey.

Find the original recipe here.

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