A delicious spiced sweet bread
- 2cupscoarsely chopped dates(10 ounces pitted)
- 1/3cupCointreau or Triple Sec
- 4tablespoonsunsalted butter, at room temperature((½ stick ))
- ¾cuplight brown sugar(lightly packed)
- 1extra-large egg
- 1teaspoonpure vanilla extract
- 1tablespoongrated orange zest(2 oranges)
- 2cupsall-purpose flour
- 2teaspoonsbaking powder
- ½teaspoonbaking soda
- 1teaspoonground cinnamon
- 1teaspoonground nutmeg
- ¼teaspoonground cloves
- 1teaspoonkosher salt
- ¾cupfreshly squeezed orange juice(3 oranges)
- ¾cupcoarsely chopped pecans(3 ounces)
For the Cream Cheese Spread:
- 6ouncescream cheese(at room temperature)
- 1/3cupgranulated sugar
- 1tablespoongrated orange zest
- 1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottom of an 8½ x 4½ x 2½-inch loaf pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pan.
- 2. Combine the dates and Cointreau in a small bowl and set aside for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- 3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with teh paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar together on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the bowl. With the mixer on low, add the egg, vanilla, and orange zest. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. With the mixer still on low, add the flour mixture alternately with the orange juice to the creamed mixture, beating only until combined. By hand, stir in the dates with their liquid, and the pecans.
- 4. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
- 5. Meanwhile, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the cream cheese, sugar, and orange zest on medium speed until just combined.
- 6. Slice the bread and serve with the orange cream cheese on the side for spreading.