The Perfect Bar for a Date

Oatmeal Date Bars

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Anyone familiar with the beloved children’s books that document the escapades of Amelia Bedelia might recall a specific moment involving dates. Asked to make a date cake, this unlikely heroine uses her literal reasoning skills to clip the dates out of a calendar and mix them into the batter.

This option occurred to me while coming up with this recipe.

In the end, I decided to take the boring route and use actual edible dates.

The result was not bad!

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Date Filling
10 Oz Dried Dates, Chopped
½ Cup Amaretto
½ Cup Honey

**If you do not want to use Amaretto or any type of liqueur, feel free to replace with water and a little lemon juice, and then double up on the vanilla!

Base
1 Stick Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Egg
1 Tsp. Vanilla
1 Cup AP Flour
1 Cup Oats
½ Tsp. Baking Soda
1 Tsp. Salt

Topping
10 Store-Bought Pistachio Shortbread Cookies (Regular Shortbread Works!)
2 Tbs. Cold Butter, Diced

Come Together
Preheat oven to 350°F
Combine the dates, amaretto, and honey in a sauce pan
Simmer on Medium heat for 10-15 minutes til reduced, stirring occasionally
Meanwhile, mash together the soft butter and brown sugar (I just used a mixing bowl and a fork)
Mix in the egg and vanilla
Followed by the flour, baking soda, and salt
Fold in the oats
Divide the dough in half and spread across the bottom of two 8” cake pans (or preferred pan of choice)
Layer the date syrup on each cookie layer (halfsies)
Use your strength to crush and scatter the shortbread across the date syrup
Dot the top with cold butter chunks
Bake for 15-17 minutes, til a fork comes out (relatively) clean and the top has crispy brown and gold highlights

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These treats have both dates and oats in them, so people might think they are intended to be good for you, and therefore not good.

And these people would be simultaneously right and wrong.

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These sticky sweet bars ARE good and they ARE good for you because they are delicious and will make you smile!

 

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