Be sure the guest of honor at your Mother's Day brunch receives the recipe for this bread, sent in by Rosemary White of Oneida, New York—she'll appreciate its convenience. "My family likes its flavor," Rosemary reports, "and I like the fact that the bread can be baked ahead!"
In a bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until fluffy. Combine dry ingredients; add alternately to creamed mixture with orange juice. Blend well. Fold in dates and walnuts.
Pour into two greased, floured and waxed paper-lined 8x4-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack.