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With Christmas around the corner, you might be preparing the family feast already. Mince pies, check. Turkey, check. Gammon, roast potatoes, too much food – check. Here’s another recipe that you can add to your Christmas menu, which, really, is a must.


1 cup chopped dates
1 cup sugar
2 Tbsp butter
1 cup boiling water
1 tsp bicarb
1 ½ cups flour
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp baking powder
½ cup cherries
¼ cup chopped nuts
1 egg, beaten

Pour the boiling water over the dates, add bicarb and allow to cool. Cream butter and sugar well, add egg, sifted flour with baking powder and salt. Add the date mixture alternately with nuts and cherries. Bake in a greased dish (8” x 12”) at 180 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes, or until dark brown.

 Sauce: (Enough for a double mixture. You can make half the sauce for a single quantity)

1 cup sugar
1 cup water
A pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla essence
½ cup brandy

Boil sugar and water and 5 minutes. Add salt, butter and brandy. Stir well and pour over tart while still warm. Serve with whipped cream. Can be kept without cream in the fridge for a few days.