Ramadan is here, Alhamdulillah. Of course, we all know that with Ramadan comes lots and lots of dates. Don’t let the sugary sweetness of dates fool you, as these are actually very nutritious and have many health benefits.
Give this recipe from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook a spin for an alternative way to enjoy dates.
- 1 1/3 cups, pitted whole dates, finely chopped (I use a food processor coated with non-stick spray in the bowl to chop my dates quickly)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- For filling, in a medium saucepan, combine dates, water, and the 1/3 cup granulated sugar. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Cook and stir about 2 minutes or until thick. Stir in lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla; cool.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat shortening and butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, baking soda, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg, milk, and the 1 teaspoon vanilla until combined. Beat in as much as the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour. Divide dough in half. Cover and chill dough about 1 hour or until easy to handle.
- Roll half of the dough between pieces of waxed paper into a 12×10 inch rectangle. (I lay a sheet of plastic wrap on the table and wrap a sheet of plastic wrap around my rolling pin to prevent sticking.) Spread with half of the date filling; roll up dough by using the waxed paper beneath it to lift and guide. Moisten edges, pinch to seal. Wrap in plastic wrap. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Freeze 2 to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a cookie sheet. Remove plastic, and cut rolls into 1/4 inch slices, rotating the roll while cutting to prevent flattening on one side. Place slices 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are light brown. Cool on cookie sheet 1 minute. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
Hope you enjoy the recipe. Will make a lovely surprise for the family for after Iftar, Insha’Allah!
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