When I was in Palm Springs, California last month I visited Shield's Date Farm in Indio, and right now I am angry with myself for not having purchased several boxes of the dates while there. I came home with one carton of dates that was used in scones, salads, and finally this Banana and Date Bread. I wish I had more...
I am showing the original recipe below, but the Maple Cream Cheese Icing ingredients could be halved and still leave a generous amount of icing for the loaf. Or, do as my husband did... spread a little more of that extra icing on the slice of bread while eating it!
* RECIPE from DONNA HAY, adapted
• 125g unsalted butter, softened
• 1 cup brown sugar
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 2 large eggs
• 2 cups mashed bananas
• 1 cup chopped dates
• 1 3/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, sifted
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/3 cup maple syrup
MAPLE CREAM CHEESE ICING
• 16 ounces cream cheese
• 3/8 cup confectioners' sugar,
• 3/8 cup maple syrup
TO MAKE the BREAD:
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Place the butter, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 8-10 minutes, or until pale and creamy; scrape down sides of bowl. Gradually add the eggs and beat well to combine. Add the banana, dates, flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and maple syrup; stir to combine.
2. Spoon the mixture into an 8 1/2" by 4 1/2" loaf pan that has been lightly greased and lined with waxed paper. Bake for 65-70 minutes or until browned and a skewer inserted into the loaf comes out dry.
3. Cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Spread with Maple Cream Cheese Icing.
TO MAKE the MAPLE CREAM CHEESE ICING:
1. Place the cream cheese, Confectioners' sugar, and maple syrup in a food processor and process until smooth.
TAKE a LOOK: