Combine dates with walnuts and make muffins that are irresistible

Dates have long been an important food in desert regions. and are the source of syrup, alcohol, vinegar and strong liquor.

Dates have been a staple food of the Middle East for thousands of years.

In Islamic countries, dates and milk are a traditional first meal when the sun sets during Ramadan. Dates (especially Medjool and Deglet Noor) are also cultivated in southern California in the United States.

In later times, Arabs spread dates around northern Africa and into Spain, and dates were introduced into California by the Spaniards in 1765. around Mission San Ignacio.

The fruit of the date palm is known as dates. Dry or soft, dates are eaten out-of-hand, or may be seeded and stuffed with fillings such as almonds, candied orange or lemon peel.

They can be chopped and used in a range of sweet and savoury dishes, from tajines (tagines) in Morocco to puddings, bread, cakes and other dessert items. Dates are also processed into cubes, paste, spread, syrup, (date) sugar and alcohol.

Dates have high tannin content and are used medicinally as a detersive and an astringent in intestinal troubles.

As an infusion, decoction, syrup or paste, it is administered for sore throat, colds and bronchial catarrh. and taken to relieve fever and number of other complaints. Date Palms are susceptible to a disease called Bayoud disease which is caused by the fungus Fusarium oxysporum.

A 100 gram portion of fresh dates is a premium source of vitamin C and supplies 230 kcal (960 kJ) of energy. Since dates contain relatively little water, they do not become much more concentrated upon drying, although the vitamin C disappears in the process.

Nutritional value

In most varieties, the sugar content of a date fruit is almost entirely of the inverted form (namely glucose and fructose), important for persons who cannot tolerate sucrose.

The human body immediately absorbs the invert sugar in dates without being subjected to the digestion that ordinary sugar undergoes.

The flesh of dates contains 60 to 65 per cent sugar, about 2.5 per cent fibre, 2 per cent protein and less than 2 per cent each of fat, minerals, and pectin substances. Dates are also a good source of iron, potassium and calcium, with a very low sodium and fat content. In addition, moderate quantities of chlorine, phosphorous, copper, magnesium, silicon and sulphur are found in the fruit.

Dates are rich in minerals. Its phosphorous content is similar to that found in the same quantity of apricots, pears and grapes put together.

Dates are especially delicious as a fresh fruit. When used in baking, they enhance the taste of the final product.

Now, for a recipe.

Date Nutty Muffins

Ingredients:

Flour: 2 cups

Salt: half tsp

Baking powder: 2 tsp

Nutmeg: 1 tsp

Dates, chopped: 1/2 cup

Walnuts, chopped: 1/2 cup

Egg, beaten: 1

Cold milk: 1 cup

Oil: 1 1/2 tbsp

Cinnamon powder: 1 tsp

Method: Toss flour, salt, cinnamon and baking powder with a fork to mix. In a separate bowl, beat egg and add milk and oil. Add the tossed flour, nutmeg that is grated and mix well. Add chopped dates and walnuts to the flour and mix with the beaten egg and milk. After the ingredients are mixed well, set aside. Grease the muffin tin with fat and dust it with flour. Fill the greased muffin tin two-third full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 400 degree F.

PRADEED PRASANNAN

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