Sunday, October 7, 2007
Orange and date muffins
While I was working at a University as a legal officer, one of our secretaries was a lovely Kiwi girl called Danielle. Unfortunately for us, Danielle only worked with us for about 4 months before finding a new secretarial position at a school, which was more suitable for her because it was closer to her home and, as she was studying to be a teacher, was good experience for her future.
I have to thank Danielle for introducing me to the beautiful jewellery by Lisa Hoskin, a New Zealand designer. I am now the proud owner of a Lisa Hoskin earring and necklace set which I bought on Trade Me, the Kiwi version of eBay. Except for Danielle wearing her beautiful Lisa Hoskin necklace to work, I would never have discovered Lisa Hoskin's jewellery, as it is not sold in Australia. I am going on holidays to New Zealand in a few months' time, and hope to pick up at least one more Lisa Hoskin piece at that time.
I also have to thank Danielle for providing me with one of my favourite cake recipes. One day, Danielle brought in a slice of the loveliest cake for morning tea, which her mother had thrown together from bits and pieces that she had in the pantry. At my request, Danielle provided me with the recipe for her mother's cake, a date and orange loaf. This cake is sweet and fragrant, with the sweetness of the dates and orange juice offset by the sharp tang of orange zest. It is also the easiest cake in the world to make, as everything is mixed together at once in one bowl - there is no beating required. I have made this cake often since I first obtained the recipe, and I usually make it in a 12 cup muffin tin instead of a loaf tin so that I have individual serves that I can take to work each day.
Here is the recipe for Danielle's mother's date and orange loaf, so that you too can enjoy it:
2 cups self raising flour
Juice and zest of one orange
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons melted margarine or butter
1 beaten egg mixed with 1 cup milk
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped dates
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl until just combined. Pour into a loaf tin and bake in an oven pre-heated to 180 degrees Celsius. Cool for 5 minutes in the tin before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Enjoy! And Danielle, if you are reading this - thanks for this great recipe!