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Easy Date Cake Topped With Chopped Walnut

What Is Date Cake

Date cake is a popular dessert known for being very moist and having a rich caramel taste. Made with dates, it has a natural sweetness that gives it a toffee-like flavor. The cake is easy to make and perfect for any occasion, from casual family gatherings to festive celebrations.

Simply add it to the list of perfectly moist fruit-based cakes, right next to banana cake. It often has a caramel or toffee sauce on top and can include extras like chocolate chips, walnuts, or spices. Date cake is delicious served with whipped cream or ice cream and is sure to please everyone, even those who don’t usually like dates. Let’s get started on making this delicious cake in your own kitchen.

Date Cake Recipe

History of Date Cake

Date cake has a history tied to regions where dates are abundant, like the Middle East and North Africa. Dates are prized for their sweetness and have been used in cooking for a long time. Early date cakes were likely simple, made with local ingredients and baked in community ovens or homes.

As trade and cultural exchange spread, so did date cake recipes. Different regions added their own flavors, like local spices or nuts, creating variations of the original recipe.

Today, date cake is enjoyed worldwide. It’s loved for its rich taste, moist texture, and the natural goodness of dates. Whether for celebrations or everyday treats, date cake continues to honor its cultural roots while evolving with new flavors and styles.

Ingredients For Date Cake

Date Cake Ingredients

  • 1 cup pitted dates, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of chopped nuts (optional, like walnuts or pecans)
Instructions For Date Cake

Step 1: Prepare the Dates

Date Prepration

Start by preparing the dates. Place the chopped dates in a bowl and sprinkle the baking soda over them. Pour the boiling water over the dates and allow them to soak for approximately 15 minutes. This step softens the dates and allows the baking soda to help break them down, creating a smooth mixture that will blend easily into the cake batter.

Step 2: Preheat the Oven

While the dates soak, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 9-inch (23 cm) round or square cake pan to prevent the cake from sticking.

Step 3: Cream the Butter and Sugar

Date butter and sugar

In a large bowl, cream the softened butter and granulated sugar together until the mixture is light and fluffy. This process incorporates air into the batter, helping the cake rise and achieve a light texture.

Step 4: Mix the Dry Ingredients

Dry Ingredients

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, whisking together thoroughly. This dry ingredient mixture will ensure that the spices and leavening agents are evenly distributed throughout the cake.

Step 5: Add Eggs and Vanilla

Add eggs

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition to ensure thorough incorporation. This step-by-step approach helps to maintain the structure of the batter. Mix in the vanilla extract to enhance the cake’s flavor.

Step 6: Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients

Gradually add the dry ingredient mixture to the butter mixture, mixing until just combined. Be careful not to over mix as this will make a very sticky cake.

Step 7: Bake the Cake

Bake Date Cake

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Smooth the top with a spatula. Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. The baking time might change based on your oven and the type of pan you’re using.

Step 8: Add Dates and Nuts

Add Nuts

Stir in the soaked dates along with any remaining liquid from soaking. The dates add natural sweetness and moisture to the cake. If you’d like, gently fold in the chopped nuts to enhance texture and flavor.

Step 9: Cool and Serve

Serve Date Cake

Let the cake cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. This resting period allows the cake to set and makes it easier to remove from the pan. Once cooled, you can serve the cake plain, dusted with powdered sugar, with a dollop of whipped cream, or drizzled with caramel sauce for an extra touch of decadence.

Tips for Success
  • Ensure the dates are chopped into small, even pieces for better distribution throughout the cake.
  • Use room temperature butter and eggs to ensure smooth mixing and better incorporation of air into the batter.
  • Feel free to adjust the spices to suit your taste. Adding a pinch of cardamom or ginger can give the cake a unique flavor twist.

Moist Date Cake

Make Ahead and Storage

Making Ahead:

  1. Prepare and Bake: You can bake the date cake ahead of time, allowing it to cool completely.
  2. Cooling and Wrapping: Once cooled, wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to keep it fresh.
  3. Refrigerate or Freeze: Store the wrapped cake in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. For longer storage, freeze the wrapped cake for up to 1-2 months.

Serving:

  • Thawing: If frozen, thaw the date and walnut cake overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  • Freshen Up: Before serving, you can warm the cake slightly in the oven (wrapped in foil to prevent drying) or microwave individual slices for a few seconds.

Tips for Storage:

  • Air-tight Containers: Store leftover slices in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  • Freezing: For longer storage, slice the cake and wrap each slice individually in plastic wrap and then foil before placing them in a freezer-safe bag or container.
  • Labeling: Always label the cake with the date it was made before storing it in the freezer.

Sticky Date Cake

How Do You Soften Dates For Baking?
  • Soaking Method: Place the dates in a bowl and cover them with hot water. Let them soak for about 10-15 minutes until they become plump and soft. Drain the water before using the dates in your recipe.
  • Microwave Method: Place the dates in a microwave-safe bowl and add a small amount of water. Microwave on high for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until the dates are softened.
  • Boiling Method: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add the dates. Let them sit in the hot water for about 5 minutes, then drain and use as needed.
Do Dates Need To Be Soaked Before Baking?

No, dates do not necessarily need to be soaked before baking. However, soaking them can make them softer and easier to blend into batters or mixtures. It also helps release their natural sweetness, enhancing the flavor of your baked goods.

More Delicious Desserts You’ll Enjoy
IF YOU LIKE THIS DATE CAKE RECIPE

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Date Cake

Easy Date Cake Topped With Chopped Walnut

Easy Date Cake with caramel and chopped walnuts on top. It's moist and rich, made to dates which it delivers a toffee-like sweetness. Easy to make!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Cake, Dessert
Cuisine American, Middle East, North Africa
Servings 10
Calories 240 kcal

Equipment

  • Electric mixer
  • Mixing bowls
  • Spatula
  • Whisk
  • cooling rack

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup pitted dates chopped
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup of chopped nuts optional, like walnuts or pecans

Instructions
 

Step 1: Prepare the Dates

  • Start by preparing the dates. Place the chopped dates in a bowl and sprinkle the baking soda over them. Pour the boiling water over the dates and allow them to soak for approximately 15 minutes. This step softens the dates and allows the baking soda to help break them down, creating a smooth mixture that will blend easily into the cake batter.

Step 2: Preheat the Oven

  • While the dates soak, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 9-inch (23 cm) round or square cake pan to prevent the cake from sticking.

Step 3: Cream the Butter and Sugar

  • In a large bowl, cream the softened butter and granulated sugar together until the mixture is light and fluffy. This process incorporates air into the batter, helping the cake rise and achieve a light texture.

Step 4: Mix the Dry Ingredients

  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, whisking together thoroughly. This dry ingredient mixture will ensure that the spices and leavening agents are evenly distributed throughout the cake.

Step 5: Add Eggs and Vanilla

  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition to ensure thorough incorporation. This step-by-step approach helps to maintain the structure of the batter. Mix in the vanilla extract to enhance the cake's flavor.

Step 6: Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients

  • Gradually add the dry ingredient mixture to the butter mixture, mixing until just combined. Be careful not to over mix as this will make a very sticky cake.

Step 7: Bake the Cake

  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Smooth the top with a spatula. Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. The baking time might change based on your oven and the type of pan you're using.

Step 8: Add Dates and Nuts

  • Stir in the soaked dates along with any remaining liquid from soaking. The dates add natural sweetness and moisture to the cake. If you'd like, gently fold in the chopped nuts to enhance texture and flavor.

Step 9: Cool and Serve

  • Let the cake cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. This resting period allows the cake to set and makes it easier to remove from the pan. Once cooled, you can serve the cake plain, dusted with powdered sugar, with a dollop of whipped cream, or drizzled with caramel sauce for an extra touch of decadence.

Notes

IF YOU LIKE THIS DATE CAKE RECIPE
Happy Baking!
Keyword Date Cake, Date Cake Recipe

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