It’s my dear friend’s Alex’s birthday today! So for this occasion I have baked Spiced Date Brownie Cake from Abel&Cole book “Veg Box Companion”. It went a treat! Apparently this recipe originated from “Tartelettes” cakerie – nice! I especially love Vicki’s idea to make the “pretend” candles that are made out of toothpicks stuck with picture of little lights. Cute! Here is the recipe:



  • 300g stoned dates, finely chopped
  • 2 lemons, zest only
  • 500ml freshly brewed strong black coffee
  • Crushed seeds from 12 cardamom pods
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 4 tbsp honey
  • 4 tbsp black treacle or more honey
  • 250g dark brown sugar
  • 150g unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 150g mixed nuts
  • 4 tbsp sesame, pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • 400g plain wholemeal or spelt flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 4 tbsp apricot jam (optional)
  1. Line a large rectangular baking dish (approx 30 X24 cm) with baking paper
  2. In large saucepan, add the dates, lemon zest, coffee, spices, honey, black treacle, sugar and butter. Simmer and stir till combined. Let cool fully.
  3. Preheat your oven to 180C .
  4. Beat the eggs in large bowl. Add flour, baking powder and cooled date/coffee mix. Chop half the nuts and add them to the mix. Stir everything together.
  5. Pour into the lined dish. Scatter the seeds and remaining nuts evenly over the top.
  6. bake for an hour , or till a skewer poked comes out with just a few tiny moist crumbs stuck to it. Cover with a large layer of baking paper or foil after 30min, to stop the nuts from burning.
  7. To give it a stunning gloss, warm 4 tbsp of apricot jam till syrupy. Brush over the top.

I must admit that I used black current jam as I did not have any apricot one. This made the cake look odd as black current jam coloured everything purple so I had to scatter few more fresh nuts and sesame seeds to “fix” it. So use apricot jam or nothing at all! But other than that it was really delicious :b
Rasa 🙂

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