A Waitrose recipe. Odd that it doesn't mention dates in the title, since there's a whole pack in there, but it's a very tasty cake, if slightly solid thanks to the spelt flour. You definitely need the orange, in fact increase it a little if you can, as the zing is needed to lighten up both the texture and the rich taste of the dates. Be warned that this is a low and slow bake, not a cake to whip up in a hurry!
Grated zest and juice of 1 large orange
250g dried pitted dates, chopped
250g butter (or dairy free equivalent)
175g light muscovado sugar
4 large eggs
250g spelt flour
1 tsp bicarbonate soda
10 cardamom pods, seeds removed and crushed
100g ground almonds
Oven to 140°C. 20-21cm tin, greased and lined.
Heat dates with orange juice and zest for 2-3 minutes to soften, then cool. Cream butter and sugar, add eggs one at a time, then fold in flour, bicarb, cardamom, almonds, and a pinch of salt. Stir in the date mixture, spoon into the tin and level the surface. Bake 1h20-1h40 until it passes the skewer test, and remove from the tin after 30 mins cooling. Optionally, decorate with water icing (or icing sugar mixed with orange juice).