Drool-worthy Date Cake

I know, I know. It's been an extremely long time since I last posted a recipe, but I have a great one for you now - date cake! You can eat this for breakfast, for a snack, with tea/coffee or it can even be served topped with caramel or butterscotch sauce as a delicious dessert. The sweetness in this cake comes from the dates, so there is a limited amount of added sweetness. This recipe also has barely any butter and I've made my own variation by even adding a few tbsp of oats in - it gives the cake a nutty bite and really has a fantastic texture.

The most difficult step is pitting the dates. After that, the rest is a piece of cake. That should indicate just how simple, yet elegant this date cake recipe is. I love taking it to school for a snack! It looks and bakes best in a bundt pan, but if you don't have one, don't fret. A simple loaf pan will work just as well, but you may need to increase the baking time slightly to let the middle cook through.

One last thing to take note of and yet another reason to make this cake!
"Dates are rich in several vitamins and minerals. These natural products contain calcium, sulphur, iron, potassium, phosphorous, manganese, copper and magnesium which are advantageous for health. "

Date Cake
Fills one bundt pan shallowly or makes a whole loaf
200 grams pitted dates
1 1/4 cup water
30 grams butter, softened
2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup agave nectar
2 eggs
1/2 cup self-raising flour
a little less than 1/2 cup wholemeal flour
1-2 tbsp rolled oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
Preheat the oven to 175 C. Place the dates in a saucepan with the water. Turn on the heat until it comes to a boil; add the baking soda and immediate turn off stove. Let this cool. Puree the date/water mixture once cooled and strain to remove clumps. Set this aside for now.
Beat the butter and sugar in a separate mixing bowl. Add in the eggs one by one and continue to beat until light and fluffy. Spoon in the applesauce and agave nectar and give it a quick mix again. In the egg mixture, pour in the date mixture and add all the dry ingredients (sifting the flour/baking soda is a good idea). Fold all of this together until the mixture is smooth, for the most part. **Do not overmix - the cake will be too dense and hard! Place in a butter bundt pan or loaf pan lined with baking paper. Bake for 55 minutes to an hour. Let it cool as much as you can wait :) Make yourself a lovely cup of coffee/tea, grab yourself a glass of milk... and enjoy! The taste of the dates really comes through and gives this cake an amazing and natural feel.

Serve as you please: sifted with powdered sugar, caramel/butterscotch sauce or any other ingenious ideas you may have!

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