just a smidgen

Matrimonial Cake Granola

Matrimonial Granola Hdr 2I have a thing for weddings.. and Date Squares!

Here in Western Canada they’re sometimes called Matrimonial Cake because of wedding traditions that go back to ancient times that involved cakes and sweetmeats that were crumbled and tossed over the bride and groom’s head for good luck. If they ran out of cake crumbs, the guests were handed “confetto” to throw which was a sweet blend of dried fruit, nuts, and honeyed almonds. We all know that rose petals and paper confetti are now a much prettier idea for wedding celebrations!

 Matrimonial Granola3

Later on the Matrimonial Cake { Date Square } was baked to represent married life.. it begins with a solid base, smooth filling for the good times and a bumpy top for the rough patches.
Some Matrimonial Cakes have extra big lumps scattered over top.

Much later on two cakes were baked and the Groom’s dark fruitcake sliced to give to the guests.
That night the pieces of cake were tucked under the pillows so that guests could dream of their future bride or groom.

When the first of my friends got married these little slices of fruit cake were still being shared with guests..
but I’m sure I didn’t have any such dream!

Matrimonial Granola

But.. that’s not why I love it, I think it’s just the combination of creamy dates, brown sugar and oats.
The Matrimonial Cake has been stripped of it’s title and is now known most often as the

{ Date Square }

How boring is that?
The Date Square is often relegated as a filler for dessert trays.

But I love them!!

I’m always trying to find ways to turn a treat into something healthy. This gluten-free and vegan Granola is now my all time favorite.

But every time I help myself to a scoop.. the dates all seem to have vanished.. hmmm… wonder where they went?

You might have to add more as you go along and don’t skip the maple syrup drizzle part, it’s a lovely Canadian addition!

Matrimonial Cake Granola
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2 large ziploc bags
  • 1 kg bag (10 cups) oats
  • 3 cups coconut flakes
  • 3 cups pecans, chopped (300 gm package)
  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup applesauce (3 small Mott's single serve containers)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup to drizzle
  • 2-3 cups dates, pitted and quartered
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Spray a large roasting pan with cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the oats, coconut flakes and pecans.
  4. In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together the coconut oil, applesauce and brown sugar until warmed through and the brown sugar has dissolved. Pour over the oats mixture and stir well to blend.
  5. Drizzle over the maple syrup, stir lightly and then dump the mixture into the roasting pan.
  6. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, stir and back 15 minutes longer. If you wish to have crunchier granola back an additional 10-15 minutes more.
  7. Remove from the oven and stir in the dates while the granola is still warm.
  8. Let cool and stir in a jar with a lid or freeze in ziploc bags until needed.

Notes: We made this again, adding to the dry oats mixture:

1/2 cup Chia seeds
1/2 cup Flax Seeds

And adding to the liquid coconut and applesauce mixture:
1 extra Mott’s single serve applesauce

The fragrance was distinctly more “apple” and the texture much more nutty and chewy! It’s a nice variation!

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