If you grew up in or spent any amount of time in Southern California and took trips to Palm Springs AND if you were lucky enough to go thru a little town called Indio--you know exactly what I am talking about...DATE SHAKES...loved them as a kid and with my re-discovery of the date --I really like the idea of them now...but while I remember the original shake (with vanilla ice cream; NYTs shares the recipe here) being a little bit out of the every day realm, my sis told me that she makes a dairy-free version and I thought that was a great idea; so here is my recipe...feel free to ammend to your liking.
Its really good and my kids LOVE it!!
1 cup almond milk (unsweetened)
1 frozen banana (peeled and cut into chunks before frozen) OR not frozen but add 2-3 ice cubes
6 dates (Medjool variety are best) about 1/3 cup; give them a rough chop
2 tablespoons hot water
1 tablespoon of maple syrup or other sweetener like agave nectar--use a little less if using agave.
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a little protein powder never hurt--I add a tablespoon of hemp protein powder in the morning.
dash of cinnamon and/or nutmeg (optional)
Put the dates in a small bowl and sprinkle with the warm water. Let soak for 5 minutes to soften, then drain. This step can be skipped but you may end up with bits of dates at bottom of blender.
Place almond milk in blender and at high speed, add dates, a little at a time until the dates are completely pulverized. Add frozen banana chunks, one at a time; blend till smooth. Add sweetener and spices--give one last whirl and serve immediately!
just a little side note: organic dates are EXPENSIVE; conventional dates--not so much. just fyi..