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Morrocan Stuffed Dates

Chef: Anthony Cerrato

Ingredents
(1 lb.) dates
1 heaping cup almonds
1/4 Cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons orange flower water
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
 
Instructions  
  1. Blanch and peel the almonds. Bring some water to a boil in a small pot.
  2. Add the almonds and leave to boil for one or two minutes.
  3. Remove the almonds from the heat and drain.
  4. While the almonds are still warm, remove the skin by pinching individual almonds between your forefinger and thumb.
  5. Leave the skinned almonds to cool.

Make the almond paste.
  1. Process the almonds, sugar and cinnamon in a food processor until the almonds are a powdery mixture which is moist enough to pack.
  2. Add the butter and orange flower water and continue processing until a smooth paste forms around the blade.
  3. Remove the paste from the processor and if desired, divide and color the paste by kneading a drop or two of food color into each portion.

Stuff the dates.
  1. Roll small cylinders of almond paste the same length as your dates, but only about 1/3 the diameter.
  2. Take a date, make a vertical cut deep enough to remove the pit, but not so deep as to cut the date in half.
  3. Discard the pit, insert a cylinder of almond paste, and press the sides of the date firmly around the paste, while leaving a portion of paste exposed.
  4. Repeat with the remaining dates and almond paste.

 



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