Chocolate covered dates. Yup. I’ve wanted to try these for a while, and seeing as in Ramadan dates are a plenty (it is traditional to open ones fast with a date), I thought it would be the perfect time to give it a go. Also they would make a perfect Iftaar party gift. I thought I would try several different fillings/toppings/coating combinations to see what goes right with dates, seeing as they are already sweet you don’t want to add to much sweetness. We made these ones using Tunisian dates which aren’t as sweet and caramel-y as their Saudi counterparts, so in a way they went well with the sweetness of the chocolate, however they are longer so we couldn’t fit them in our mini cupcake cases properly. Here’s a mini how to: (the hand photos are courtesy of my sister)
Prepare all your ingredients before hand, there ends up being quite a few! so make sure you have everything at hand.
You will need a
- Baking tray lined with greaseproof paper
- Small pair of tongues (there’s no licking chocolate off your hands when your fasting!)
- A few bowls to melt the chocolate in
- Your own combination of toppings/coatings/fillings (more on this below)
Make sure you remove the stones from the dates first, a tedious job but one that has to be done, noone wants to bite into a stone after fasting all day!
After the dates have been pitted you can fill them with your fillings. We used whipped cream (for the dark chocolate ones), peanut butter (to balance out the sweetness of the milk chocolate.), almonds (also for the milk chocolate ones) and walnuts (again to balance out the sweetness of the white chocolate). Other filling ideas could be clotted cream, chocolate spread, any type of nut and even dried fruit.
To go with the dark chocolate we paired whipped double cream, these turned out quite nice however the cream does have a tendency to melt if the chocolate is too hot. As the chocolate was dark, we thought a sweet topping would be best so we used white chocolate stars (very seasonal!)
To go with the milk chocolate/ peanut butter ones we used desiccated coconut, again the topping possibilities are endless, basically whatever you would decorate cupcakes with you could use. we wanted to keep them quite neutral and simple but you could use any colour sprinkles you like!
For the other toppings we used mixed chopped nuts and chocolate crispy balls (normally found in the baking section of superstores). Once your done place the tray in the fridge to allow the chocolate to set (will take a few hours to set properly) you will know they are set properly as they will just lift off the greaseproof paper easily.
We served ours in the tiny cupcake cases that you can buy from anywhere, If you are giving these as a gift then an extra touch is to present them in a nice dish/box/container. Here’s a few ideas…
My favourite one was the milk chocolate/peanut butter ones, I loved the contrast in flavours. Will definitely be making these again…Hope you’ve been inspired!