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Date-Fig Bars

By: 
Rabbi Phyllis Sommer
Date-Fig Bars for the Jewish Holiday of Tu Bishvat

This recipe is adapted from the King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion's recipe for Bakery Date Squares. The original called for only dates and had a variant filling recipe using figs and orange juice; this version mixes up dates and figs for that Tu BiSh'vat flavor!

Ingredients: 
Filling
3 cups of chopped dates and figs
1 cup of water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla
Crust
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or all-purpose)
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
Directions: 

Filling

  1. In a saucepan, combine the ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 5 minutes. The mixture will thicken after a few minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. I ran the immersion blender through it to give it a nice smooth texture and let it sit for a while.

Crust

  1. Whisk together the dry ingredients (except the nuts) and then add the melted butter. Stir until well combined.
  2. Lightly grease a 9x9 inch pan and press 2 1/2 cups of the crust mixture into the pan, smoothing it out to fill the bottom with no gaps.
  3. Spread the filling on the crust. Add the nuts to the remaining crust mixture and sprinkle it over the filling.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, until golden brown. Let cool before cutting.

 

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