Ah, the drunken date. We’ve all been there. Am I right? Thankfully, this is a different kind of drunken date. Medjool dates soaked in liquor are sure to flirt with your taste buds in this intoxicating quick bread. While this bread is a twist on rum raisin, there is no rum…and there are no raisins. In fact, Gentleman Jack showed up at the door for this date, and he was the perfect gentleman indeed. That is, until he got the dates drunk as skunks. I can assure you, though, that the drunker the dates, the better. Did that just make me sound like a slimy frat dude? Geez, my mind is in the gutter. Anyway, try this scrumptious bread as a snack with afternoon tea or for breakfast the morning after a drunken date of your own ;)
Drunken Date Bread
Adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe
Makes 1 loaf
2 cups coarsely chopped dates
½ cup bourbon (I used Tennessee whiskey), dark rum, or brandy
4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature¾ cup granulated sugar
1 extra-large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup coarsely chopped walnuts (or pecans)
¾ cup milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 ½ x 4 ½ inch loaf pan with cooking spray and then dust with flour. Pour liquor over the chopped dates and let sit for at least 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
In a separate bowl, beat together butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla extract until combined. Stir in the flour, baking powder, spices, drunken dates, and walnuts. Pour in the milk and add leftover liquor from the dates if the mixture seems a bit dry.
Pour batter into the loaf pan and smooth the top with a spoon. Bake for 50-55 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely. Cut into slices, top with butter, and enjoy!