Salted Date Pie

April 13, 2011


Author Notes: I caramelized some brown sugar, butter, and dates this week to make a family cookie recipe. I was kind of infatuated with the date caramel that resulted, and wanted to see if it would work as a simple pie filling. It's everything I hoped it would be, like a slice of soft, nuanced caramel. In fact, if you didn't know if was made with dates, you might not guess it. My 16-year old thought it was a slice of caramel pie after school today. The crust doesn't serve up neatly, but if you don't mind a homespun looking dessert, the almonds give it a deeply toasted flavor. If you don't have Celtic salt, add just a pinch of conventional salt to the pie.ALittleZaftig

Serves: 12 modest pieces

Ingredients

For the Crust

  • 1 cup whole almonds
  • 1 3/4 cups very finely crushed graham cracker crumbs
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

For the Date Caramel

  • 2 pounds whole dates
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Celtic salt
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Place the almonds on a sheet pan and bake them for 10 minutes, giving them a shake halfway through the baking time. When they have cooled a bit, grind them finely using a food processor.
  2. Lower the oven heat to 375 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine the ground almonds, graham cracker crumbs, and melted butter, stirring them with a fork to combine. Press the mixture firmly into a pie plate with your fingertips until it reaches up the sides and is uniform. Bake the crust for ten minutes and set it aside.
  3. Meanwhile, slice the dates in half and remove their pits. In a large pan over low heat, melt the butter, brown sugar, and dates, stirring periodically. The dates will melt down into the brown sugar and butter and caramelize. This takes a bit of time, just pop in on it every few minutes to give it a stir. Towards the end of the process, stir more frequently so that the mixture does not burn. It should smell caramelized when it is ready.
  4. Pour the date caramel into the crust and spread it with a spatula. It will set at room temperature.

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Pie|Fruit|Date|Serves a Crowd|Sheet Pan|Dessert

Reviews (3) Questions (0)

3 Reviews

AppleAnnie November 13, 2011
This pie is heavenly--we had it today at our Food52 Cookbook Launch party in Minneapolis. Thank you so much ALittleZaftig, for bringing it.
 
Author Comment
ALittleZaftig May 15, 2011
Thank you. I love it when experiments lead to something delicious.
 
Sagegreen April 18, 2011
Really interesting and tempting!