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Date Nut Muffins

Bring the hostages home.

Blue ribbon bring hostages home.jpeg

Date Nut Muffins


Yield 20 medium size muffins


1 cup walnuts chopped 

1 cup dates, pitted and chopped

1 cup brewed coffee, hot

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 tsp coarse salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

2 large eggs 

1 tablespoon vodka

1/2 cup  brown sugar, packed

1/3 cup vegetable oil 

1 1/2 teaspoons baking poweder 

1 1/2 cups flour 

1/4 cup walnuts, chopped for sprinkling on top before baking

1/4 cup dates, chopped for sprinkling on top before baking.


  1. Preheat oven to 350F (176C). On the muffin tins, spray oil  or grease. You may also line them with muffin papers.

  2. Chop nuts and dates. Set aside.

  3. Add hot coffee to the chopped dates. Stir to separate. Add baking soda, salt, and vanilla extract. Stir to break up the chopped dates, which will stick together.

  4. In a medium mixing bowl whisk together eggs, vodka, brown sugar and oil, breaking up any lumps.

  5. Add flour and baking powder. Do not over mix. Fold in walnuts.

  6. Use an ice cream scoop or tablespoon to fill your muffin tins about 3/4 full. Sprinkle extra walnuts and dates on top of batter.

  7. 15-20 minutes or until the muffins have risen and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

  8. The muffins can be eaten warm or at room temperature.  Eat with a shmeer of cream cheese. The muffins freeze easily.


Expandthetable suggestions

Nuts: Try peans, almonds or hazelnuts in place of walnuts
Alcohol free: Omit vodka is you don’t want to use alcohol. Replace with water.

Nut free: Eliminate nuts. You mayday raisins to replace.

Adapted from the Date Nut Bread from King Arthur Baking Co.

Foodie Lit

    “I had no answers for Elta. None that would be truthful, anyway. At least not now. But I knew that we needed a home. My daughter needed to live in a place where she wouldn’t have to live in constant terror. A home where she wouldn’t have to be fearful that murderers might come for her in the middle of the night. Where people didn’t hate her because of an accident of birth.”

    So thinks Shaindel, a main character in Sherry Ostroff’s excellent historical novel, The Wall At The Sugar Factory. A pogrom opens the novel, murdering Avram, Shaindel’s husband, along with most men in her village. Women and girls were raped and murdered, homes looted and burned, and fear was in the air. Shaindlel hoped that a mother and her child would not be targets. But she knew better.

    Shery's other books reviewed: Caledonia, Mannahatta, Expulsion.  All are fabulous for book clubs and Sherry is available for remote talks to your club!

I loved Date Nut Bread when I was a kid, schmeered with cream cheese. I haven’t seen it on the shelves for a long time. Why not make this old favorite into muffins?

In this cold snap so many of us have been having, there is nothing like a warm muffin with a cup of tea, while cozy under an afghan. Take a book with you! Naturally sweet with dates, which I was fortunate enough to get from Kibbutz Gilgal in Israel.  Add touch of brown sugar and enhance the flavor with vodka and brewed coffee. I’ve been eating the muffins with breakfast, lunch and dinner and the small muffin size helps with portion control. I spread cream cheese on the muffins, as my mom always did. You may add jam or any other topping of choice. Wrap in freezer proof bags and pop the muffins in the freezer. They defrost quickly and are great snacks for afterschool, work or a quick breakfast when in a rush.

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