In my freedom, I am going to post the recipe that my sister Barb has just sent me, in response to my desperate request. It’s a cake my mom made frequently, and the making of which my sister has taken on. I’ll tote it to a potluck today and think about my mom, who slipped away from us just a couple months ago while valiantly trying to recover from a broken neck.
I’ll give you the short version, but Barb’s elaborate, scientific, and highly edifying commentary is available on request. Don’t be dissuaded by the name. The dates really just function as another source of sugar; I am not a date lover and I love this cake.
CHOCOLATE CHIP DATE CAKE DISCOVERED IN ST. PAUL’S LUTHERAN CHURCH, RICE LAKE WISCONSIN, SOMETIME BEFORE 1960
1 C. chopped dates
1 1/2 C. boiling water
1 tsp. baking soda
Pour the boiling water over the dates and soda in a small saucepan. Allow to cool.
Cream 1/2 C. of butter with 1 C. of white sugar. Add two whole eggs. Add the cooled date mixture.
In another bowl, sift together
1 1/2 C all purpose flour,
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. baking soda
Combine the dry ingredients with the butter/sugar/egg/date mixture. Mix until well blended.
Pour into a 9X13X2″ baking pan (I usually spray with a cooking spray)
BEFORE BAKING, sprinkle over the top:
6 oz. (1C) semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 C. white sugar
1/2 C.. chopped nuts (walnuts are the norm)
Bake at 350 degrees until nicely brown.