I am not really sure why, but I seem to have been amassing quite the collection of dates. I guess that every time I saw them on sale I picked some more up but I was not using them quickly enough. One of the reasons that I was collecting the dates was because they are naturally sweet and I enjoy baking with them, often replacing some of the sweetener with some dates. One of the dishes on the top of my to try list with dates was date crumb bars. The crumb bars are basically a filling, in this case dates, sandwiched between two layers of crumbs. Given that I was just thinking of dates as being naturally sweet, I decided to use very little sweetener in the date mixture and go with something natural like honey. The crumbs are made from flour, sugar, butter and rolled oats. Of course I took the opportunity to use a little whole wheat flour in the crumb mixture to make these bars just a little bit healthier. The date crumb bars were nice and easy to make and they turned out great! The last time that I made crumb bars they did not hold together too well so this time I made sure to pack the bottom layer of crumbs in really well and this time they held together nicely. The date and honey mixture was amazing! It was sweet without being too sweet and nice and moist and helped to hold the bars together. Now I am looking forward to making more things with all of the dates that I still have left!
Date Crumb Bars(makes 9+ servings)
1 pound dates (pitted and chopped)
1/4 cup honey
1 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter (melted)
1. Bring the dates, honey, water and butter to a boil, remove from the heat and let sit until they cool down to room temperature.
2. Puree until smooth.
3. Mix the rolled oats, flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.
4. Stir in the butter until it forms crumbs.
5. Press half of the crumb mixture into the bottom of a greased 8 inch square baking pan.
6. Spread the date mixture on and top with the remaining crumbs.
7. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 25 minutes.
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