A very dear friend invited us over to brunch this past weekend in honor of her father being in town. Along with the email invitation came a bulleted list of what to expect. These are just a few of the gems.
Hilariously brilliant, and I must report: completely accurate.
- If you are a woman and remotely attractive, do not be surprised if he flirts with you.
- He should be wearing a hearing aid but if you think he’s ignoring you, he likely just cannot hear you.
- His attention span is shorter than mine. He is very impatient. But he knows a ton of old-school jokes.
What would be on your list of what to expect when friends meet YOUR parents for the first time?
With an introduction like that, I knew we couldn’t exactly show up empty handed. After paging through the latest issue of Vegetarian Times (Hello? I do need some Meatless Mondays inspiration!), my kid and I whipped up our own version of the magazine’s date cake before we were even out of PJs.
I know it doesn’t sound all that appetizing but trust me when I tell you that this cake is a crowd pleasure. Not just with 65+yr dads who hit on their daughter’s friends, but also with the daughter’s friends. Oh, and I should also report that it was beyond lovely to meet the legend and to see our friend’s new place that she restored into a warm and welcoming home. Now for the recipe…
Date Cake Recipe
adapted from Vegetarian Times magazine
Prep Time: 30 mins (mostly unattended) Cooking Time: 35 to 40 mins
1 1/2 cup pitted dates
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all purpose flour
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 pinch of salt
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
7 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
2 extra dates for garnish
Place dates, butter and baking soda in a heat proof bowl and cover with 1 1/4 cups boiling water. Set aside for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat an 8 or 9 inch spring form pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Whisk together flours, brown sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Transfer date mixture (including water) to a food processor and pulse until the mixture becomes a wet paste. Add eggs and vanilla and pulse again. Pour date mixture into flour mixture and stir until just combined. Don’t over mix. Transfer to prepared pan and smooth out. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Let stand for 20 minutes. Meanwhile make glaze by whisking together confectioners’ sugar, orange juice, lemon juice and lemon zest. Un-mold cake and transfer to serving plate. Pour glaze on top letting it drip onto the sides. Cut each date in thirds and form a flower shape on top of cake. Serves 10.