These date “truffles” are given their texture and sweetness from rich, caramel-flavoured Medjool dates which are softer and chewier than standard varieties. With only four ingredients, they’re also much simpler to make than traditional chocolate truffles. Wrap in parchment paper and give as Christmas presents.

Makes 10

10 Medjool dates, unpitted
5 tsp crunchy peanut butter or thick tahini (sesame seed paste)
150g dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
½ tsp Pure Sea Salt

Place the dates on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Use a sharp knife to make an incision from one end of each date to the other. Gently lift out the stones and discard them.

Use a teaspoon and clean fingers to spoon in half a teaspoon of peanut butter or tahini and push down to fill the gap left by the stone. Gently squeeze the sides together. Place the filled dates in the freezer for 20 minutes.

While the dates are in the freezer, place the dark chocolate in a heat-proof bowl and suspend over a pan of barely simmering water, making sure the bowl doesn’t touch the surface of the water. Remove from the heat just before the chocolate is melted and stir until the chocolate is smooth throughout and glossy.

Take the tray of dates from the freezer and use teaspoons to turn each one in the bowl of melted chocolate to cover completely before sprinkling with flaky sea salt. Repeat with the remaining dates, chocolate and salt. Place the tray in the freezer for half an hour. The dates can be eaten straight from the freezer or kept covered in an airtight container for up to a week.

RECIPE: Anna Shepherd
IMAGE: Jess Lea-Wilson