These cake-like muffins have a nice balance of chewy dates and crunchy pecans. A sweet orange glaze is the perfect complement to the mild-flavored muffin.
- 1/2 cup chopped dates
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 2 tablespoons plus 2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 cup shortening
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup orange juice
- 2 teaspoons grated orange peel
- In a small bowl, combine dates and pecans; add 2 tablespoons flour. Toss to coat; set aside. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the baking soda, salt and remaining flour; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Fold in the date mixture (batter will be stiff).
- Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 375° for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.
- Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine glaze ingredients. Cook and stir over low heat until sugar is dissolved. Spoon over warm muffins. Yield: 16 muffins.
Originally published as Citrus Date Muffins in Best of Country Breads 2000, p17
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