Friday, March 8, 2013

S3PP: Pentoshi Stuffed Dates

S3PP - Season 3 Premiere Party
Pentoshi Stuffed Dates

Otherwise known as Roman Sweets by the geniuses who created Inn at the Crossroads, a food blog that dives into the world of Westeros and gives us the dishes that George has us all drooling over.

You can find the recipe for them here:

These were a lot of fun to make and since I have a ton of people coming over, I had to make OODLES of them.  I bought my dates on Amazon - I could get 5 lbs of them for about $18.  Now hold on, you can get back in your chair!  5 lbs of dates is A LOT OF DATES.  There is another recipe I'm making for the party that has dates in it and I will have plenty left over for that.

Inn at the Crossroads says to use chestnuts... well, after searching for them like they were the holy grail in every market in the area and coming up empty, I decided to use a mixture of pine nuts, pecans and macadamia nuts.  Not entirely certain they would have pecans in the regions of Pentosh but I digress...

I chopped these up so that they're a bit on the courser side of life - just how I like em!  I then roasted them in a pan just long enough to get most of them that toasty brown color.  While they were still warm I tossed in the cinnamon and a little pinch of cloves and ground ginger just to give it an little extra umph. 

Now here is the fun part...  Stuffing them.  My project requires 6 small jars and one huge jar - I plan on serving black cherries and cream in a small bowl with 3 dates for each person on the side.  This means I will need 39 dates for the big jar and 16 dates for each of the 6 smaller jars.  I'm thinking I'll just round that up to 50  for the big jar in case someone decides that they're awesome - which they are.  That means that total, I will be stuffing 146 dates when this is all said and done... more action then I've seen in a lifetime! (So many dates, har har!)

I used a kabob skewer to help me open up the dates a bit to get the nutty and delicious filling inside.  To fill up my 6 little jars, I would say that with my poor time management skills and while entertaining a squishy, I spent about 2 hours total.  I still have to stuff the big jar which I plan to do tonight. 

By the time I was done stuffing 1 small jar (16 dates...) my fingers were covered in a delicious mix of spices, chunks of nuts and dates... I had to resist every urge to lick my fingers but I did!  For the first few jars I would wash my hands after so that when I poured the honey in I would get the goop all over the side of my honey bottle... after the third jar though I decided that a little goop on the honey bottle wasn't going to kill it and saved time by making a huge and hilarious mess.

My favorite part of this project was pouring the honey in the jars.  I bought a HUGE bottle of honey at Costco for another $18 but this will last me not only for every jar I'm making but I will also be able to use it for a ton of other things too.  We use honey a lot in our kitchen as a substitute for white sugar so this purchase was very easy for me to justify.

It took a while for the honey to settle into the little nooks and crannies of the jar but when they finally did and the jar was full, they looked beautiful. 

Now I have 6 small jars of stuffed dates and I made them a few weeks ago so I want to see what I can do to preserve them.  They're already in canning jars and since I know nothing about canning, why not try to boil them to seal them, right?  You're thinking this is going to turn out a disaster but it worked out just fine. 

I'm making a date with myself and my dates... it's going to be spicy but full of nuts... and very sweet... There’s a crude joke in there about stuffing nuts into the hole of your date but I'll let your sicko minds explore that one...  muhahahaa!

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