Aunt Martha’s Date Nut Krim-Krams

Feature Recipe January 2007
Heim gets his just desserts
     The third annual Dessert Contest at the picnic was won by Keith Heim of Lincoln, perennial winner, with his “Aunt Martha’s Date Nut Krim-Krams” recipe. His culinary prowess was rewarded by a first prize trophy of a hammer. Runners up were Barbara Heim Schacht and Michelle Heim. The winning recipe follows.

Aunt Martha’s Date Nut Krim-Krams
3 cups cake flour; 1 T. baking powder; 3/4 tsp. salt
3 cups packed light brown sugar; 3 large eggs; 3/4 lb.(3 sticks) unsalted butter; 1 T. vanilla extract

Optional: 3 cups add-ins, including dried fruit (cranberries, cherries, raisins, apricots, or dates); 3 cups coarsely chopped nuts (pecans, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, macadamia), and/or semisweet, bittersweet, or white chocolate chips.
     Adjust oven rack to lowest position, heat to 325 degrees. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with vegetable cooking oil.
     Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in small bowl. Heat brown sugar and butter in large pan until bubbling hot. Whisk eggs and vanilla in large bowl. Slowly whisk hot sugar mixture, then dry mixture into eggs. Stir in optional add-ins. (If using chocolate, let batter cool slightly first.) Scrape batter into prepared pan, then bake until mixture just sets–about 45 minutes. Remove from oven. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

*Note: I used English walnuts and dates—suggest buying whole pitted dates and cut in halves or quarters. Can use date bits to sprinkle on top of baked cake. May want to add more nuts and dates besides what is called for. Might sprinkle nuts and dates on top of cake a few minutes before taking out of oven. Also sprinkle additional sugar on top of cake.
Important: The cake will not taste particularly good out of the oven—best if let sit about two days in refrigerator.