Coarsely chopped dates: 2 cups (about 12 ounces)

Water: 2 1/2 cups

Baking soda: 2 tsp

Sugar: 1 2/3 cups

Butter (softened): 1/2 cup

Large eggs (room temperature): 4

Vanilla extract: 2 tsp

All-purpose flour: 3 1/4 cups

Baking powder: 2 tsp


Butterscotch Sauce:

Butter (cubed): 7 tbsp

Packed brown sugar: 2 1/4 cups

Half-and-half cream: 1 cup

Brandy: 1 tbsp

Vanilla extract: 1/4 tsp



Whipped cream



Prepare the Dates:

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a small saucepan, combine dates and water; bring to a boil.

Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Cool to lukewarm.


Prepare the Cake Batter:

In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy (about 5-7 minutes).

Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Beat in vanilla extract.

In another bowl, mix flour and baking powder; gradually add to the creamed mixture.

Stir in the date mixture.

Transfer to a greased 13x9-inch baking pan.



Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool slightly in the pan on a wire rack.

Prepare the Butterscotch Sauce:

In a small saucepan, melt butter.

Add brown sugar and cream, and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and stir in brandy and vanilla extract.



Serve the sauce warm with the warm cake.

If desired, top the cake with whipped cream.