Another fabulously rich recipe from The Homesteader’s Kitchen: Recipes From Farm to Table by Robin Burnside, these Date Nut Bars provide a wholesome dessert option and pack well for road trips or inside lunch boxes!

Date Nut Bars

by Robin Burnside

Ingredients

1 cup (1/2 inch) dates, about 10 to 12 large, pitted Medjools

1/4 to 1/2 cup water, depending on variety and density of dates

1 tsp. lemon zest

2/3 cup rolled oats

2/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour

2/3 cup sucanat

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. cardamom

1 1/3 cups butter (preferably organic)

1 cup pecan halves or pieces

Preparation

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place dates, water, and lemon zest in small saucepan, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes or until dates are soft; remove from the heat and cool.

Place the oats in a food processor and process into coarse-grained flour. Add the whole wheat pastry flour, sucanat, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom and process again briefly. Cut the butter into the bowl and pulse to incorporate evenly into the dry ingredients, stopping as the dough begins to clump.

Grease an 8 x 8-inch straight-side baking dish with a little butter and press half of the dough onto the bottom. Spread the cooked dates evenly across the top and cover with pecans. Sprinkle the remaining dough evenly over all and gently press the topping into place.

Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until the top begins to brown. When done, set the baking dish on a wire rack to cool. To avoid crumbling bars. cool completely before cutting. Wrap individually to keep fresh for lunches, snakcks, and kids on the go. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

*Recipe and image courtesy of The Homesteader’s Kitchen: Recipes From Farm to Table by Robin Burnside. To order a copy, please visit Amazon.com.