Salted Date Pie

by Laura on April 13, 2011

Well, just as I had smelled spring in the air, piles of snow as big as a school bus spied on my way to rosemaling class and news of another snow storm on its way to Minnesota have put me in the mood for a few more days of winter cooking.  My Kaffeeklatsch are coming today, so I baked up an experiment; they are such gracious guinea pigs.  I was pretty infatuated with the brown sugar, butter, and dates that melted and caramelized together for the date balls I made the other day, so I thought I would see if the principle would work as a simple pie filling.  I tossed in some crunchy Celtic salt at the end for a little salty bite, and poured it into a simple press-in crust I made with ground toasted almonds and graham cracker crumbs.  The verdict?  It’s everything I hoped it would be, like a slice of soft, nuanced caramel.  If you didn’t know it contained dates, I imagine you would never guess it.   In fact, you could call it salted caramel pie and your guests might never be the wiser.  My crust experiment will need a tweak next time around, as it doesn’t serve up very neatly, but the date caramel slices beautifully, and if you don’t mind a pie that looks homespun on the plate, the crust was delicious, too.  If you don’t have Celtic salt, dramatically reduce the salt in the pie.  The coarse pieces of Celtic salt remain intact in the pie so they don’t charge the filling with a uniform saltiness.  Add just a pinch of conventional salt as a substitute.


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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Beth April 13, 2011 at 3:08 pm

Wow! I absolutely love dates, this looks so delicious!

2 krisannjacobson April 14, 2011 at 7:54 am

I am so lucky.
I got to taste this pie yesterday.
It was utterly scrumptious. I’m craving it again, and it’s only 8 a.m.
I’ve never tasted anything like it.

3 Laura April 14, 2011 at 9:29 am

You’re so kind, Kris.

4 Zo @ Two Spoons April 15, 2011 at 7:32 am

This is such a brilliant idea! Quite a bit healthier than regular caramel pie too.

5 Lizzi April 15, 2011 at 8:45 pm

Oh man. This is so far up my alley I fear it may be moving in.

6 Pei-Lin April 16, 2011 at 12:12 pm

Oh, Laura. This pie is interesting. I bet my date-loving Arab friends would go for seconds and thirds. I myself am a fan of salted caramel. Would love serving it with pancakes and crepes someday.

Yes. I saw tweet reply to me about the weather in Minnesota. I wouldn’t be surprised. Haha! Snow storms strike Minn. even as late as end of April! I remember it was like 39 degrees Fahrenheit on May 08, 2009 — commencement day for those graduating from Bemidji State University that year, including me. ;)

Well, it’s Minnesota! My American-expat friend, Stitch, upon hearing “Minnesota,” he said, “Whoa, it’s COLD up there!” Haha! He was an Oklahoman who lived in SoCal before relocating to Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia).

7 Meagan @ Scarletta Bakes April 16, 2011 at 3:56 pm

Wow does this pie look good – I especially love the photograph and use of the dates. And the Celtic salt on top is genius. I was wondering what rosemaling is?

8 Laura April 16, 2011 at 7:42 pm

Thanks, all! Rosemaling is the national decorative art of Norway.

9 Peggy April 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Yum! I never would have thought to add the salt in there! Nice touch!

10 laura April 28, 2011 at 1:01 pm

wowzers! so creative. if i use my earth balance instead of butter it’ll be just perfect for me! :) bookmarking with my account at !

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