- 220 gram fresh dates, pitted, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup (125 millilitres) water
- 2 tablespoon caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon finely grated orange rind
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup (40 grams) walnuts, roasted, finely chopped
- 100 gram butter
- 8 sheets filo pastry
- 100 gram dark chocolate, chopped
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease two oven trays; line with baking paper.
- 2In a small saucepan, stir dates, the water and sugar over low heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low; cook 5 minutes or until mixture is thick and most of the liquid has evaporated. Cool 5 minutes.
- 3Stir rind, vanilla and nuts into date mixture. Transfer to a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap; cool to room temperature.
- 4Melt butter. Cut one sheet of pastry in half widthways; brush butter around edges. With a long edge facing you, place 3 tsp of filling 1cm up from the long edge. Using damp fingers, pinch the filling out until 15cm long, leaving a border at each short end. Loosely fold in the sides, then roll up the pastry to form a cigar shape; brush with butter. Repeat to make a total of 12 rolls.
- 5Place cigars on trays; bake 15 minutes or until golden. Cool on trays.
- 6Place chocolate in a small heatproof bowl over a small saucepan of simmering water (don't let water touch base of bowl); stir until smooth. Remove bowl from pan, stir in oil; cool 10 minutes. Dip the cigar ends into chocolate; return to trays. Spoon remaining chocolate into a small ziptop bag; snip end and drizzle chocolate over tops of filo cigars. Stand until set.
Buy fresh filo from the refrigerated section of the supermarket as it is easier to work with than frozen filo pastry, which has a tendency to be brittle and crack.
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