Today I chatted with Anna Mitchell, Sacred Heart Radio, about dates.
Did you know that dates were discovered in Mesopotamia around 4000 BC?
The Babylonians loved dates so much they wrote a recipe for date syrup on a clay table. Dates were used for barter, as well. Dates signified food for eternal life and were often pictured in tombs.
Here’s a recipe that is what I call weird and wonderful. Weird because you make the muffin batter in a blender, wonderful, well, one bite and you’ll understand!
BLENDER WHOLE ORANGE AND DATE MUFFINS
Make up to a day ahead. Keep wrapped at room temperature or freeze. You can buy dates already chopped. This is not a real sweet muffin; very moist and delicious!
1 juice orange, about 8 oz, with peel left on, seeds removed and cut into 8 pieces (don’t use a navel, thick skinned orange, just use the regular juice orange)
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup chopped dates
1 stick butter, softened, cut up
1-3/4 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon each: baking powder and soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
‘Preheat oven to 400. Put orange pieces, juice and dates in blender. Puree. Add egg and butter and blend. Set aside. In large bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt. Pour orange mixture over top and stir gently to combine. Pour into sprayed muffin tins, filling about 2/3 full, and bake 15-20 minutes, until top springs back when pushed with finger. Don’t overbake. Makes 12 muffins, or about 18 mini-muffins. (If making mini-muffins, check after about 10 minutes).
Tip from Rita’s kitchen:
If you like, sprinkle a bit of Demerara or Turbinado/raw sugar on before baking for extra sweetness and crunch. Or do as I do, make a thin confectioners sugar glaze and drizzle it on the muffins.