Date Bars (Makes ~16 squares)

(Adapted from recipe found on Yummly at https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Date-Bars-1406325 )

In my blog entitled, “So you want to increase your fibre?”, I discussed how you can adjust the fibre in recipes by switching from refined flours to whole grain flour. I have changed this date bar recipe originally found on Yummly website as an example of how this can be done.  I have made this product a few times previously with small adjustments each time.  Sometimes it can take a few tries to get a version you like.  The original version was a little too sweet for my family, so along with changing other ingredients, I also decreased the sugar content.  Remember to be brave when you experiment.  Some of my experiments turn out amazing others…less so.  In my next batch, I am going to replace the white flour completely with whole grain flour to add a little crunch along with even more fibre. It may make it too dense but I won’t be sure until I try!

Note: I have bolded the items I have changed and provided a few different change options. 

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Baking time 20-25 minutes

Ingredients:

1 and 1/2 cups of chopped pitted dates

1 cup whole wheat flour (original recipe used self-rising flour)

2 and 1/4 tsp baking powder (because I didn’t use self-rising flour)

1/2 tsp salt (because I didn’t use self-rising flour)

1/3 cup heaping white flour (reduced to allow for addition of alternative whole grain product)

1/4 cup ground flax or hemp seeds or chia seeds (Each ingredient will provide different benefits. Chia and flax will add more fibre. All three will add beneficial healthy fats).

1/4 cup lightly packed brown sugar

1/2 cup rolled oats

1 cup vanilla yogurt (only because I did not have any plain yogurt in the house)

2 eggs

1/3 cup olive oil (I like using grapeseed oil as it has no flavour)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400⁰F. Grease 8×8 or 9×9 square pan (the original recipe uses 11×7).

Combine dates, flours, brown sugar, oats and seeds into a large bowl.

Stir in mixture of yogurt, eggs and oil until just combined.

Spoon into pan.

Bake 20-25 minutes until golden. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes then then remove from pan to cool completely on a cooling rack.

Cut once cool and enjoy!

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