Date and walnut cake Recipe

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15 min


1 hr 15 min
(plus 10 mins cooling)

Nutrition per portion

Calories 280 kCal 14%
Fat 14g 20%
  -  Saturates 6g 30%

A real teatime treat – moist sponge dotted with dates and walnuts, topped with a creamy frosting. We defy you not to sneak a second slice!


  • 175g (6oz) dates, finely chopped
  • ¾ level teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 60g (2oz) butter, softened
  • 175g (6oz) light muscovado sugar
  • 1 medium egg, beaten
  • 250g (8oz) self-raising flour
  • 60g (2oz) walnuts pieces, chopped
  • For the topping:
  • 125g (4oz) mascarpone or cream cheese
  • 30g (1oz) walnut pieces, roughly chopped
  • 20cm (8in) round cake tin, lined with Bakewell paper


  • Set the oven to gas mark 4 or 180°C. Put the dates and bicarbonate of soda in a bowl and pour over 200ml (7fl oz) boiling water. Leave for 5 mins.

  • Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl, beat in the egg and then the date mixture, with the water. Fold in the flour and walnuts and stir lightly until well mixed. Spoon the mixture into the tin and smooth the top.

  • Bake for 1-1¼ hours until risen, and a skewer when inserted comes out clean. Leave for 10 mins, then take out of the tin to cool on a wire rack. Spread mascarpone, or cream cheese, over cake and sprinkle with nuts.

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This recipe was taken from the March 1939 issue of Women's Weekly