Generally, your sweet tooth is your Achilles’ heel (a force that overpowers all of the good intentions when it comes to a healthy diet in this context.) However, it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s feasible to satisfy your dessert cravings without going overboard while watching your blood-sugar level or weight management regime.
Dates are known as winter food and loaded with nutrients like iron and anti-oxidants. They are high in fiber & potassium, too. According to the experts, people with diabetes can benefit from it, provided they follow a regular exercise regime and healthy diet habits. However, people with a restricted potassium diet need to watch their dates intake. The key to remember is ‘The dose makes the poison.’ (Not medical advice; please consult your nutritionist before adding dates in your regular diet.)
Dates and nuts roll, also known as Khajur Roll, is a nutrient-dense dessert. The sweetness of the dates itself is sufficient for making these rolls. Hence we don’t need to add extra sugar. Most traditional Indian sweet recipes need a considerable amount of effort, but this one is quick and easy to make.
- 2 generously filled cups of Medjool or Safawi Al Madina dates.
(Please remove seeds from the dates before measuring.)
- 1/2 cup of roughly chopped raw unsalted un-roasted raw cashews.
- 1 cup of roughly chopped walnuts.
- 2 tsp white poppy seeds.
- 1 tsp Ghee (Clarified butter).
- Dry roast nuts till they are warm, as shown in picture #4, and keep them aside. Alternatively, you can also pan roast nuts in ghee, aka, clarified butter. The idea is to make those nuts crunchy. You can also add a few pistachios, as shown in picture #5, to make the dessert more colorful.
- Lightly pan-roast poppy seeds, approximately for a minute or two.
- Remove seeds of the dates and pan-roast de-seeded dates in 1/4th tsp ghee until warm, as shown in picture #6. This process makes dates soft and easy to mash. I prefer to mash the dates by hand while warm. Some people mash dates in the blender.
- Next, mash dates thoroughly, as shown in picture #5. Please grease your hand with ghee to avoid your hands getting sticky with dates.
- Mix roughly chopped nuts in the mashed dates, as shown in picture #6 and then roll like a log.
- To make a roll, take an aluminum foil and place the dates and nuts mixture on it. Then using your hands, shape them into a cylinder, as shown in picture #10.
- Next, grease the roll with ghee, spread poppy seeds on the foil, and coat the dates-nuts log with the roasted poppy seeds by rolling the log like a rolling pin.
- Cover the dates roll in the foil and refrigerate the rolled log for at least an hour so that cutting rolls is seamless.
- Next, cut the rolls into round pieces, as shown in picture #8 and dig-in!
- Please store it in an airtight container.
Another Medjool dates delicacy variation is stuffed dates, as shown in the following picture. Dates are a way to enjoy sugar in nature’s original packing. The healthy dessert recipe can’t get easier than this one. Discard seeds of Medjool dates, stuff a raw unsalted-unroasted cashew per date, pan-roast the stuffed dates in a few drops of ghee for 3 to 4 minutes, and optionally, roll dates in a desiccated coconut. Alternatively, you can stuff almonds in the dates and coat them in dark chocolate.
I prefer to use poppy seeds for the Dates-Nut roll recipe, but you can substitute white poppy seeds with desiccated coconut if it’s hard to find it. These rolls last for a month in the refrigerator. Sometimes I like to add pistachio pieces for adding more color to the dessert.