Dates are one of the oldest cultivated fruits in the world. It is a symbol of hospitality, rest and peace in the Middle East. This is the food that brings together all the different people from all over the region, especially during the holy month of Ramadan. Breaking the fast with dates is a Ramadan tradition that makes dates a staple food in every house during this month.
Medjool dates, a Middle Eastern delicacy
In the world of dates, Medjool dates are often considered the finest of all date varieties and they are known to be large, sweet and very succulent. They are widely regarded as the “king of dates” due to their size.
Medjool dates are high in fiber and potassium, with a natural sweetness that makes them a delicious treat any time of the day.
We are using Nakheel Palestine Jumbo Medjool dates in this recipe. Nakheel Palestine Medjool dates are grown and harvested right in the heart of Palestine around the ancient city of Jericho on the Palestinian side of the Jordan Valley.
Nakheel Palestine Medjool dates are graded by size and quality into five distinctive categories: Super Jumbo, Jumbo, Large, Medium and small
Banana, Walnut & Medjool Date Cake
This simple and moist cake is really delicious with all the goodness that succulent Medjool dates provide. Though we are using the jumbo Medjool dates in this recipe, any soft and sweet dates will work. Serve with a cup of coffee or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
For those who are observing the month of Ramadan, this cake is a great nutrient-packed option for suhoor. The healthy fats in walnuts can help boost and replenish energy levels. The potassium in bananas helps retain water and suppress thirst during the long fasting hours. And of course, the fiber in dates helps regulate your digestive system.
- 10-12 Medjool dates, stoned and roughly chopped
- 2 ripened bananas, plus one sliced for decoration
- 50g walnuts, chopped
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 175g softened butter
- 250g all-purpose flour
- 170g caster sugar
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 25cm (base) cake pan and line base with parchment paper.
- Cream the butter and sugar together until pale. Add the eggs and beat the mixture again until well combined.
- Add the mashed bananas, chopped medjool dates, and walnuts to the cake mix and mix gently.
- Add the flour, baking powder and vanilla extract. Combine gently.
- Pour the cake mix into the lined cake pan.
- Slice a banana and arrange the banana slices on top.
- Bake for 40-50 min until firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let it cool. Serve with coffee or vanilla ice cream
This recipe is adapted from Palestine on a Plate cookbook by Joudie Kalla