For my birthday: rum-themed flaming desserts! Arrrrrrrrrr..... Now, the ice cream looks simple, but trust me, it is heaven in a dish. And totally what pirates would have eaten had they had freezers. And blenders. And raisins. The date cake is dense and fabulous, and flaming it makes the brown sugar into a kickass layer of rum-flavored caramel on the top. The flaming date cake is an invention of my sweetums, who made it for me, and so I've copied her recipe here.
Flaming date cake:
18 pitted dates soaked in the soy milk (below), about an hour
Soy Milk 3/4 cup
Sugar ½ cup
soak ½ cup pitted prunes in the same soy milk with the dates
All purpose flour 1 cup
Baking soda 1 teaspoon
Cashews, walnuts, brazil nuts for selenium (to taste)
Dark rum, brown sugar, and matches for flaming (optional)
Soak the dates and prunes in soy milk for 1 hour up to overnight. Add sugar and grind to a smooth paste along with the milk. (Use hand blender or mortar and pestle, depending on degree of technophobia. I use the mortar and pestle).
Sieve together flour and baking soda. Add the flour one tablespoon at a time and mix slowly. Add the broken-up nuts and mix.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the cake in a greased oven proof dish for 35-40min (or till a knife inserted in the cake comes out clean). Or, line a cast iron skillet with grease/ovenproof paper and bake in this.
To flame, spread brown sugar evenly across the baked cake surface to “hold” the rum. Heat the rum till hot but NOT boiling (boiling will remove the alcohol, which is needed for flaming). Pour onto cake and light with match. Remove pouring vessel with hot rum from near vicinity of the cake before lighting, as it may catch fire too. This is okay of you are prepared for it (if you are pouring from a metal saucepan with a handle, for instance) – you can pour the flaming rum for added dazzle in this instance. The brown sugar will caramelize. After flames go out, tilt cake back and forth to disperse the caramelized sugar.
10 frozen overripe bananas
1 cup raisins, soaked in enough rum to cover for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight
1 tsp vanilla
1/4-1/2 tsp black pepper
pinch nutmeg 1/2 c soy milk
agave to taste if your bananas were not sweet enough
Drain raisins, keeping rum. Set raisins aside. Try not to snack on them, but if you know beforehand you will fail in not snacking on boozy dried fruit, then just set up more the day before! This be my trick. Blend everything else (including rum). It will be too runny to serve as ice cream at this point. Put it back in the freezer in a metal bowl (the rum will keep it from freezing solid) for a few hours, stirring whenever you remember (once or twice in 4 hours does just fine). Stir in the raisins just before eating.