Cakes sweetened with dates instead of sugar

Gluten Free Orange Almond Cake sweetened with dates

orangealmondcake3slice

‘This is another very popular recipe with my readers and viewers., perhaps becuase it is so quick and easy and is suited for most special diets.  All those who have made it seem very pleased with the result.  It is simple, straightforward with no added processed sugar or butter.

I adapted this cake from a recipe given to me by Lucy Grech.

It is gluten free and lactose free.’

You will need:

2 large oranges or 3 small ones, with skin on and washed
5 eggs
250g dates, chopped
250 ground almonds
1 tablespoon cornfour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
a pinch of salt
vanilla

Optional: Add 4 tablespoons of organic cocoa nibs if you wish

cake tin of 23 cm
baking spray

Immerse the oranges in a large pot of water and bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer for an hour. Drain and allow to cool.

Preheat oven to 160C.

When the oranges have cooled down completely, place in a food processor of if you prefer use a hand held blender to puree [skin included] until you have a smooth paste.

Prepare the cake dish with baking spray and dust the dish with a tablespoon of ground almonds that will adhere to the baking spray.

Add the eggs, chopped dates, pinch of salt, vanilla to the pureed oranges and blend on high speed until the mixture is smooth.

In a separate bowl mix together the ground almonds, the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cornflour and mix well.

Pour the orange and egg batter into the dry ingredients and use a large metal spoon to gently fold in. Check the dropping consistency and if necessary add one tablespoon of water at a time to achieve a dropping consistency.

If you are using cocoa nibs, add them now and keep a tablespoon to top the cake.  Mix gently.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake dish [if you have used cocoa nibs scatter the remainder on to of the cake] and bake in a preheated oven for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Allow to cool completely before removing from the tin.

This cake is moist and has a heavy texture. It tastes even better the day after it is baked.

Store in the fridge after a couple of days or slice and freeze for up to 3 months.

Date and Walnut Cake with no butter and no sugar

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Date and Walnut Cake with no butter, oil or processed sugar

‘This is one of the most popular recipes with my readers and viewers. Everyone seems very pleased with the result. It is simple, straightforward with no added processed sugar or butter.’

You will need:

125g chopped dates
100g dried mixed fruit of your choice
200ml warm water
125g self raising flour
200g walnuts
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder
Pinch mixed spice
Zest and juice of two tangerines or one orange
Zest of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon baking powder or 1 tablespoon apple organic vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped nuts of your choice

dates by deyma 1

Dates by Felix Cesare

Soak the dates in the water. Prepare a cake tin covered with baking paper.
Mix the dates and water together.
Add the self raising flour and baking powder, then add all the other ingredients and stir without over mixing.
Pour the batter into the cake tin,
Bake at 180C for 35 minutes.
Allow to cool before taking out of the tin.

‘Lea’s tip: Do not overmix’

Quick Chocolate Fudge Cake with chocolate fudge frosting [no refined sugar]

ChocolateFudgecakewithnosugarcj

Chocolate fudge cake with no added sugar, the cake and frosting are both sweetened with dates, photo CJ Baldacchino during a live tv show

‘A simple, straightforward cake and although it contains no added processed sugar, it is rich and decadent. The cake and frosting are both sweetened with dates instead of sugar but none of my tasters detected the absence of refined sugar and you simply cannot taste or see the dates. I had enough leftover batter to make the kids’ cupcakes’

For the chocolate fudge cake sweetened with dates you will need:

400g self raising flour
60g cocoa powder
a pinch of cinnamon
a pinch or coffee powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
a pinch of salt

250g dates
4 eggs
125g yoghurt
vanilla
150g butter
50ml oil
400ml water

Preheat the oven to 170C.

Prepare a cake tin by spraying it with Baking Spray.

Place the dates in a saucepan and add half of the water in the recipe. Gently cook on low heat until the dates soften and the water to reduce. Remove from heat and add the vanilla and butter which will melt. Allow the mixture to completely cool. Then add the yoghurt, oil and eggs and use a hand held blender to make a completely smooth mixture.

Sieve the flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder twice and add the salt, coffee powder and cinnamon.

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and use a large metal spoon to gently fold in the mixture. Do not over-mix. Add the rest of the water a little at a time until you have a dropping consistency.

Pour the batter into the cake tin. You can also use two cake tins of 23 cm each to sandwich a very large cake together.

Bake in a preheated oven for 40 minutes and test with a skewer to make sure it is completely cooked inside.

Allow to cool completely before frosting the cake.

For the fudge frosting sweetened with dates, you will need:

200g dark chocolate
150g unsalted butter
200g dates
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 tablespoon olive oil or oil of your choice
vanilla

Soak the dates overnight in water until they are completely immersed. Drain the water and use a hand held blender to make a very smooth paste.

Melt the chocolate preferably in a bain marie. Once it is melted remove it from the bain marie, add the oil and stir until it is smooth and glossy.

Place the butter in a mixing bowl and use the whisk attachment of an electric mixer to beat the butter until it is fluffy and light in colour.

Add the vanilla and cocoa powder and dates and blend until it is smooth and consistent. The gradually add the melted chocolate with the mixer on low speed.

Frost the cakes and cupcakes according to your preferences.

Chocolatefudgecupcakeswithnosugarcj.jpg

Chocolate Fudge Cupcakes during my tv show this week, photography CJ Baldacchino

Lea’s Good Food Everyday airs on Smash TV and you can follow on facebook

Trade Enquiries: Good Earth Distributors Ltd for dates, dried fruit and baking ingredients

Chocolate sweetened with Stevia by Valor at J Calleja Import Export Ltd

Avocado Oil Baking Spray by Fry Light at Rimus Group

Big Fresh Mosta, Oscar’s Fruit and Vegetables Paola and Barbuto [organic] for fresh fruit and vegetables

Tableware by Loft Naxxar

Lea’s Good Food Everyday airs on Smash TV and you can follow the page on facebook

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10 thoughts on “Cakes sweetened with dates instead of sugar

  1. Wonderful cake, thank you!!
    Also- somehow even though I reduced the water and dates it turned out very sweet and moist (cooked for over an hour and still very moist), which is also surprising because I used spelt flour and not AP flour.

    Like

    • I chop the dates roughly and pour hot water over them. The consistency varies depending on the type of dates you use. I do not like to puree them to keep the texture and colour of the cake light. Then simply add them to the liquid ingredients before folding them into the flour mix.

      Like

From the heart of the Mediterranean.... Thank you !

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