Classics: Homemade Sweet

Courtesy of Jake Morton

This recipe, originally entitled “Homemade Sweet” is from the cookbook attributed to the ancient Roman gourmand Apicius, in reality a collection of recipes from the first 4 centuries AD. This dessert from a time and place before sugar shows the Roman love of imported foods (the dates are specifically from Syria in the Latin), the Roman love of disguise and surprise in the arts (the walnut taking the place of the inedible pit), and that mixing salt and sweet was a part of Mediterranean desserts far before salted caramel hit the scene. And, they are fantastic!


  • 10 dates
  • 10 walnut halves
  • 3 Tablespoons coarse salt
  • ¼ cup honey


Pit the dates and put a half a walnut where the date was and then roll the date in the salt. Put the honey in a pan and heat over low heat until it bubbles. Add the stuffed, salty dates to the honey until fully coated. Remove from pan.