Dates. According to a neighbor, a nurse who worked in the Middle East for several years, many Middle Eastern people believe that dates have medicinal properties. Specifically, that it could ease pain. Mothers-to-be in the throes of labor would ask for dates, the nurses would pick from the trees outside the hospital, and the mothers-to-be would chew dates right there in the delivery room.
Placebo? Maybe. I’ve never tried eating dates as a pain reliever. I just like eating them, period. And I love baking with them. These loaves of bread, made with my tried-and-tested basic bread recipe, has dates, coconut flakes and honey inside. You don’t need to spread anything on this bread as it is perfect by itself.
Recipe: Dates, coconut and honey bread
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Prepare two 8″x4″ loaf pans. If your loaf pans are not non-stick, grease and flour them lightly.
- In a bowl, mix together the dates, coconut flakes, 1/4 c. of butter and 1/8 c. of honey.
- Take the risen dough and roll into a rectangle about a quarter of an inch thick.
- Spread the dates-coconut-honey mixture on the dough.
- Roll the dough into a log. Cut into two equal portions and place them in the pans. If you want to be a bit OC, you can tuck the cut sides underneath. It’ll stretch the top and make the loaves smoother.
- If some of the butter drips out during rolling, don’t worry — just scoop the butter and pour over the dough in the pan.
- Bake at 350F for 35 minutes (if you use a different size of pan, I don’t know what the proper baking time should be).
- Take the loaves out of the pan. Mix together the remaining 1 tbsp. of butter and 1 tbsp. of honey and brush on top of the loaves. Return the bread into the oven and bake for another five minutes.
- Cool the bread in the pans for about ten minutes before inverting. Continue cooling them on a rack. Or not. We couldn’t wait. We sliced one loaf while still hot. We were hungry.
Preparation time: 15 minute(s)
Cooking time: 40 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 2 loaves