Medjool Date and Walnut Bread and Recipe Contest

Quick breads are just that, quickly prepared, no yeast for rising time, just stir and bake.  Like banana bread, date and nut breads are extremely versatile and I bake these types of breads often to have on hand for snacking and meals.   I always reduce the sugar and replace butter for applesauce to make healthier versions of what could be sugary, buttery or oily quick breads…or is that dessert?

I am always changing around the spices I use and dropping in additional surprises, like mini chocolate chips, coconut, pecans instead of walnuts or pistachios or almonds.  If I have a good base recipe, interchanging like items always seems to work well.  To state the obvious, changing out nuts for nuts, dried fruit for dried fruit, spices for spices.  Additional items are added in ¼ cup amounts, no more than two additions.

Along with the versatility of ingredients, serving ideas are endless as I shared in my banana bread recipe.  As this bread is fairly dense and not overly sweet, a quick dip in egg for French toast is a heavenly treat for breakfast topped with chunky sautéed peaches or apples and syrup.

Toasted into cubes, date and nut croutons are amazing with a fall salad of spinach, pears, pancetta, gorgonzola and balsamic dressing.  Truly a winning combination!

And speaking of winning, Caroline at Sweet Caroline’s Cooking  recently posted a Swanson’s health product review through which I found out about their Blogger Recipe Contest.

Swanson Health Products sells a full range of discounted organic foods, vitamins and supplements, natural skin care, and so much more.    To enter the contest, bloggers create an original, healthy recipe using at least four ingredients that can be purchased at Swanson’s.  Winners are chosen based on healthy, unique recipes and most popular.  So my dear friends, if you like this recipe, please share me, like me, twitter me and leave a comment!   And, if you’re so inclined, enter your own healthy recipe! Thank you from my healthy heart!

Medjool Date and Walnut Bread

1 cup pitted dates, coarsely chopped 

¼ cup date sugar 

¾ cup boiling water

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour 

1 tablespoon flaxseed meal 

2 teaspoons baking powder 

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon cinnamon 

½ cup unsweetened applesauce

1 egg (1 tb. ground flax seed and 3 tb. water soaked for 5 minutes)

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 ½ tablespoons dark rum (or freshly squeezed orange juice)

½ cup chopped walnuts 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray or lightly grease a 9×5×3 loaf pan.  Combine dates, date sugar and boiling water in a small bowl.  Allow to sit and cool for about 10-15 minutes.  Meanwhile, combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and set aside.  In another smaller bowl mix together the applesauce, flax egg, vanilla and rum until combined well.  Add both the applesauce mixture, followed by the date mixture into the large bowl of dry ingredients, combine well.  Stir in the walnuts.  Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for approximately 45-50 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick test comes out clean.

For serving with a spread I like to prepare flavored butters or cream cheeses by simply mixing in an all fruit jam like orange marmalade or pumpkin puree with a favorite spice, like nutmeg or cinnamon in softened butter or cream cheese.  The spread will last 2-3 days in the refrigerator.

53 thoughts on “Medjool Date and Walnut Bread and Recipe Contest

  1. Thank you so much for the shout out, Linda!! I actually didn’t even know about this blogger recipe challenge they host–too cool. You concocted a fabulous recipe, I could eat that entire loaf! I’m actually finishing up my post for today, so I will definitely include a link to your page/post. 🙂 xx

  2. I love loaf/bread type cakes. I don’t do a lot of cooking with dates but really should because they’re wonderful. Fabulous, moist and delicious looking loaf, thanks for sharing!

  3. I also am one of those who put less sugar in recipes (I usually cut it in two and sometimes it’s still too sweet to my taste), and substitute butter with some other ingredients…
    Your walnut bread looks fantastic and so easy!

  4. WOW, that looks good–if you can’t win with this amazing-looking bread, then I just don’t know! Next time I have a craving for dessert-but-healthy bread, juuust might give this a go. But sub raisins for dates. Because I’m cheap.

  5. Quick breads are so nice to serve at breakfast when you want something a little sweet but not overly sweet. Your bread would make a big hit in our house. I love the idea of making some croutons out of it.

  6. I love Date and walnut bread! but I never thought there could be other ways to eat it than with a cup of tea..now I have all these options that I must try!
    I’m sharing this on facebook Linda and I will include a link in my next post
    Good luck

  7. Yeah, I love nuts in loaves!! (and, if I had to pick, I’d say walnuts are my favourite). Paired with the full flavour of dates, this is one beautiful and tasty looking bread. You’ve made so many smart ingredient choices – particularly appreciate the low sugar and love the sautéed chunky peach topping idea – whoa! Great recipe Linda.

  8. Linda, this bread sounds wonderful. I like how you make your recipes nutrient dense. I love using dates in my recipes, not only is it a natural sweetener but it’s also good for you too like dietary fiber and B vitamins. I am going to make this bread this week, I have all the ingredients except for the date sugar but I’m sure I can find a substitute. Thanks for letting us know about the blogger contest, I’ll have to take a look at it if my crazy schedule allows for it!

  9. the first time I made this bread I used dried cherries and toasted walnuts. It was totally fabulous. I made it again yesterday with the dates and toasted walnuts and now I can’t tell you which I like best. I am definitely keeping this recipe as my new quick bread favorite.

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