Originally Posted by Yakuta
Fresh dates are a very different animal than dry dates. Dry dates further also come in different varieties.
Fresh dates are crunchy and it feels like almost biting into a mini apple with a pit in the middle. I have not seen many recipes asking for fresh dates.
Dry dates come in various varieties (large and small, soft and hard). The softer ones are what a lot of recipes call for so I suspect your friend is referring to these.
I am not sure what you mean by processed dates. Is it date pulp, if so it's still dates and not really processed and can be used with cream or whatever in the recipe.
Also lemon zest is best used fresh and depending on the recipe you can use little or lot. I have never used dried lemon zest to be able to comment. Zest has a lot of oil in it and that oil will be lost the longer you store it and in the end the dry stuff will turn into nothing but powder without any flavor.
Thanks, Yakuta, this is all pretty much as I suspected, but you were able to put it in better, more confident words. What I meant by "processed dates" are what we by in the store - dried, pitted and pressed into a block.
I double checked and the recipe definitely says "chopped fresh dates". But from what you have said I think I will tell her to go ahead and use her dates not adding any extra liquid.
And it seems we agree on the dried lemon zest - never heard of it and would rather than fresh. I think I will get DH to drive over one of my fresh lemons tonight!
Well, I will be trying this dessert at her place tomorrow night so we shall see how it turns out!