Share a favorite recipe from your mother or grandmother’s kitchen. Why is this dish your favorite? If you don’t have one that’s been passed down, describe a favorite holiday or other meal you shared with your family.
I haven’t made this in several years and it isn’t a dish of which I am particularly fond, BUT it sure has memories.
This is the official story and recipe:
This recipe was handed down to me from my grandmother, Jean Remley Kerr. Jean made this faithfully every Thanksgiving and Christmas for the entire family – each household got a pudding. She reported receiving the recipe from Nan Hackett, who was a cousin of Jean’s mother – Jane Rice Remley. Nan’s son James (lawyer) married Paula Thackeray, a Hungarian-American woman. Paula made the original date nut puddings. Jean got the recipe from her.
My copy is handwritten on three little tablet pages in blue ink. I copied as exactly as I could, including the oft repeated instruction to mix. Enjoy!
Heat oven 325 degrees.
Butter tube pan (she preferred to cook in a tube shaped pan, but not one that pulled apart so she eventually switched to a traditional loaf pan after her tube pan wore out).
1 pkg pitted dates – 8 oz
1 tsp baking soda
1 c. hot water
1/4 lb butter, unsalted or 1 stick
1 c sugar
1 c sifted flour
1 tsp vanilla
2 c walnuts in pieces
Cut dates in half. In small bowl, combine baking soda & water. Soak date pieces in mixture while you are combing the following ingredients.
In mixing bowl, cream butter with sugar and mix well. Add egg and mix. Add vanilla and mix. Add date mixture and mix. Add sifted flour and mix well. Add nuts – mix by hand.
Pour into buttered tube pan and bake in 325 oven for about 1 hour. Test top with your finger to make sure it is baked well. May need another five minutes. Set pan on rack to cool. When cool remove pudding by putting plate on top and inverting onto plate.
That’s all. Good luck. Jean.
My grandmother was called “Jean” by my cousins.
So this dish is tasty but really heavy so it inevitably gets stale before it can be finished. Each year, I intend to make it and somehow time gets away from me.
I did some research. Paula Thackeray Hackett is not the least bit Hungarian. She and her family seem to be English or Irish. So that deepens the mystery about my great-grandmother, Jane Rice Remley.