Green icing makes a St. Paddy's cake

Dates, an oblong-shaped fruit from the date-palm are mostly eaten raw, but are wonderful added to cakes and boiled or steamed puddings too. Although there are several varieties of dates, the ones we buy are the large, soft, and juicy kind, full of natural sweetness.

Many Americans are familiar with cooked dates in the popular date-nut breads but in Elizabethan cooking they were used with pork in ragouts along with oranges, grapes, and lemons.

Here is a date cake to make for St. Patrick's Day. It is not an Irish recipe , but it is an easy cake for busy people to make.

Baked in a bundt pan, it is Irish in the icing only, which is a basic frosting glaze to which you add a few drops of green food coloring for the occasion. St. Paddy's Date Cake 4 eggs, at room temperature 1 cup brown sugar 1/2 cup oil 1 teaspoon salt 3 cups pecans, chopped 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/4 cup unbleached flour 1 cup whole wheat flour 3 cups dates, pitted and chopped

Beat eggs, sugar, and oil together. Stir in other ingredients until blended. Line bundt pan with waxed paper then add cake batter. Place in cold oven, then turn oven on to 300 degrees F. and bake 55 to 60 minutes or until done. Cool 20 minutes, then remove from pan to a cooling rack. Glaze 1 cup powdered sugar 3 to 4 teaspoons water 1 to 2 drops green food coloring

Mix together powdered sugar, water, and food coloring and spoon over cake.

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