Sunday, April 13, 2008

Warm Dates for Breakfast

I'm a big fan of dates as a snack food and added to all sorts of dishes, but my very favorite way to enjoy dates is warm for breakfast in Date Nut Muffins. On Saturday I decided to make some to go with the fresh fruit and coffee that Sweetie had made. Since I usually eat a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, I decided to add some rolled oats to one of my favorite muffin recipes, along with the dates and some pecans. They were delicious!

The basic recipe for Muffins in Joy of Cooking was the starting place for this recipe, but, as usual, I made some changes. Fresh from the oven these smelled wonderful and the dates were soft and warm, the oatmeal gave the muffins character, and three of us managed to polish off nine muffins in hardly any time at all. Don't be surprised if there are none left to photograph or to enjoy with afternoon tea.

A few days ago, when I was completely exhausted from by far the busiest week that has ever happened at work, I found that sweet Mrs. W of Mrs. W's Kitchen had awarded me the 'E for Excellent Award'. Awww, that is so special. I enjoy writing this blog and know that there are folks who enjoy reading it, but had never thought that it was actually excellent. Thank you Mrs. W!

Part of getting the Award is then passing it along. I took some time with that, so here are the Awardees, followed by directions of what they are supposed to do once they get the Award, followed the by Date Nut Oatmeal Muffin recipe.

Hope you will visit the Awarded sites to see why I think that they are Excellent blogs and bloggers. There are at least 10 more I could name, but I'll save that for another time. If I have given an Award to a blogger who has already gotten one, well, guess they are super Excellent! , Culinary Concoctions by Peabody, this is the blog I check out when I only have time to visit one (a too frequent event these past weeks) because the posts are personal and thoughtful and the recipes are sweet, delish, and the photos usually make me want to lick the screen., Taste and Tell, Deborah’s posts are engaging, her photos are great and she gives excellent information for the recipes…plus it’s fun to read her blog. La Mia Cucina, Lis is a totally funny blogger and cracks me up with her posts…plus she is den mother to the Daring Bakers along with the next nominee. Cream Puffs In Venice, Ivonne’s blog is elegant and inspiring with truly lovely photography. She and Lis (above) began the creation of a wonderful baking community, too. Jumbo Empanadas, Brilynn is unfailingly interesting, totally herself and her blog is delightful to read. Her enthusiasm for baking is inspiring, plus she is funny. Chez Us, Denise writes a thoughtful blog…check out the Ape Diet…also clean and appealing photos., Cooking the Books, Kelly-Jane blogs about baked goods (my favorite) and main dishes with equal appeal. We often get multiple recipes in one post…and they are all good., Tastes Like Home, Cynthia could be my next door neighbor, even though she likes hot & spicy foods and I don’t. Her passion for ingredients is awesome and her photos really capture the beauty of those ingredients. Finding La Dolce Vita, Maryann writes so well, it is always fun to see what she is sharing with us. Great recipes and fine photos, too. Technicolor Kitchen, Patricia has such great recipes…pasta, cookies, truffles, ravioli, pinwheel scones, and more. Very inspiring.

There are rules relating to the E for Excellent award*. Here they are:
- Find at least 10 more blogs of any kind which you deem to be excellent;
- Post about which blogs you picked, linking to me and to them;
- Once you've posted, return here to let me know your post is up, and of course let your 10 award winners know, too.
*If you've already received this award in the past, I won't hold you to selecting 10 more.

And now for the Date Nut Oatmeal Muffin recipe:

Date Nut Oatmeal Muffins
Makes 12

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup sugar
1 cup quick cooking oatmeal, uncooked
¾ cup chopped dates
½ cup chopped pecans
2 eggs or ½ cup egg substitute
2 tablespoons melted butter
¾ cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Spray the cups of a 12 cup muffin tin (or 2 6 cup muffins tins) with baking spray (or grease with butter or shortening)

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Mix in the sugar and oatmeal. Gently mix in the chopped dates, coating them with the flour mixture. Mix in the pecans.

In a smaller bowl, mix together the eggs or egg substitute, melted butter and buttermilk until well combined.

Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture and quickly, with a few strokes, stir to just mix. Fill each muffin cup about ¾ full. Place the muffin tin(s) into the preheated oven and bake for 15 – 20 minutes until golden brown.

Serve hot. These are delicious eaten plain, but very good, too with some butter.


  1. Anonymous8:32 PM

    Thank you for the award! So sweet of you!! We really appreciate it!

    Love your date muffins ... I will have to try them once we are off of the "ape diet"!

  2. Great choice of blogs! The date muffins are exquisite. I hear you on not haing enough time to do te fun stuff like reading blogs, I feel so bad I can only read and keep up, wis I could leave little comments everywhere but I can't. Know that you are always in my thoughts and that the only way I am going to be able to repay you for the quinces and more is to come visit one day!

  3. What is excellent are these muffins!

  4. Dear Elle, thank you so much for the award!
    And those muffins look amazing!

  5. Anonymous5:51 AM

    You're a sweety, Elle! Thank you very much. I appreciate your kindness :)

  6. These muffins sound wonderful. I don't usually use dates, but that is one thing I want to start trying out!

    Thanks so much for the award - I am so honored!! I have actually been given the award once, so I don't know if I will pass it on again, but know that I truly do appreciate it!!

  7. Thank you so much for the award :) especially if I get some gorgeous dates for breakfast, mmm!

  8. I'm a big fan of dates, I could eat them like candy.
    Thanks for the award! Much appreciated!

  9. Great recipe! I appreciate the little butter called for and the small amount of sugar - thought It makes sense since dates are sooo sweet all on their own.

  10. Warm dates for breakfast, with melting butter - add a really hot Americano tall and I think I died and went to heaven

  11. Anonymous5:11 AM

    I found that just stuffing dates with creamed cheese and topping them with a sliver of toasted almond makes for an elegant and simple party type of hors d'oeuvre when there isn't something big like a cake to enjoy. These muffins sound FABULOUS.

  12. Dates cost a fortune over here, and aren't nearly so wonderful as they are in California. I'm guessing that they come from somewhere in the middle east - or Greece, maybe? - and are nothing like Palm Springs dates.

    When we come home, we're stocking up ... and then maybe we'll have the luxury of eating them as an ingredient, rather than as simply a fabulous treat!

  13. I am a new fan of dates. I had them a few times as a kiddo and didn't care for them much, but I used to even hate beets and now I love 'em :). I recently used dates in a sticky toffee pudding recipe - and now I'm addicted to lara bars which also include dates...but I've never had date muffins. If there are carbs involved, and even dates, I'm sure to love it! Nice meeting U :).

    Flour Arrangements

  14. Date muffins sound really good!

  15. Your muffins look fab. I love dates in things - they give a nice stickiness. Perfect for breakfast.

  16. Dates and oatmeal are two of my favorite foods! I can't wait to try these in the fall when the next fresh crops of dates come in. They look like they're worth the wait! :)

  17. Oh, and congratulations on your award, Elle. :)

  18. Awww thank you so much, sweetie! I'm glad I can keep you smiling :)

    Love you!

    And I couldn't NOT comment about those muffins too.. they look SO GOOD. I love dates- but I don't think I've had any in a muffin... YET! :D


  19. Your muffins look wonderful. I wish I wasn't the only one in my family who likes dates. These would show up on my breakfast table often!

  20. You are always so generous and sweet to me and I love you! Thank you for this award and looking at the other awardees, I have to say that I am honoured to find myself among such esteemed company! Thank you!

  21. Yayyy! Thanks for the award, Elle!

  22. Anonymous2:16 PM

    I just posted on our site, finally! Thank you again!

  23. Anonymous2:28 PM


    I just got the post up! Again, thank you!

    ~ Chez US

  24. wow, wow, WOW! I have some left over medjool dates that this would be perfect for! great post!