This recipe makes three rolls of dough, which can be frozen until ready to bake.
Cream the butter and brown sugar together in a mixing bowl until smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Sift the cinnamon, salt, baking soda, and flour together in a second mixing bowl. Slowly stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture until evenly blended.
Divide the dough evenly into three portions and place each on a square of waxed paper. Wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, make the filling by combine the dates, pecans, water and white sugar in a saucepan set over low heat. Cook and stir until the filling has a paste-like consistency. Cool slightly.
Working with one portion at a time, roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to make a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick. Spread 1/3 of the filling evenly over the dough; roll up to make a log. Repeat the process with the remaining dough. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Lightly grease two baking sheets.
Using a sharp, serrated knife, cut the rolls into 1/4 inch slices. Place the slices on prepared baking sheets.
Bake in preheated oven until set and lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Cool on racks.
Per Serving: 123 calories; protein 1.6g; carbohydrates 19.1g; fat 4.7g; cholesterol 17.4mg; sodium 47.8mg.