12 Days of Caravan-Serai Cooking – Day 2

Stuffed Dates

The people of the Middle East are known for stuffing anything that we can – from peppers to eggplant, to grape leaves, to dates. This is a recipe for the holidays using the big juicy dates that come in about now and you can find them at the grocery store or local market.

These are perfect for serving with coffee and tea when people drop in for the holidays or just keeping them around for a nice dessert or an energy boost.

Ingredients:dates-1up

  • 15 pitted dates
  • 15 toasted almonds or pecans
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

Preparation:

Stuff dates with one nut per date. Roll in powdered sugar.

Place on wax paper in the refrigerator until ready to serve.  Or if you want to keep for later just keep in an air tight container and put wax paper in between the layers so they don’t stick together.

Another variation:  Dates Covered in Chocolate

Ingredients:chocodatedates

  • 16 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 20-25 pitted dates
  • Toasted almonds, walnuts or pistachios
  • Coconut flakes
  • You will need a skewer and parchment or wax paper.

Preparation:

  1. First, line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or wax paper.
  2. Stuff each date with the nut of your choice.
  3. Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl for about 3 minutes, stirring halfway through cooking time.
  4. Using a skewer, dip each date in chocolate. Allow the excess chocolate to fall off by carefully rotating the skewer.
  5. Place dipped date on parchment and sprinkle with coconut flakes. Repeat with remaining dates.
  6. Allow dates to set in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes before serving.

The best dates to use for these are the Megdool variety- they are big, very soft, and very rich in flavor  – almost buttery!

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