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Orange Date Bars

Number 23 in the Muesli Bar Challenge – my weekly series of  recipes for school lunch box baking  that is healthy, easy, cheap and based on fresh produce – features oranges.  It is coming to the end of the navel orange season, and once they finish there will be a gap of a few months until the beginning of the Valencia  season.  Our navel tree is flowering again already, so I’m picking the last of them to allow the tree to put all its energy into the next season’s fruit.

Oranges are super healthy.  Besides being well known as a good source of Vitamin C, they are also a good source of folic acid, which is especially important for growing kids.  This recipe also features oats which are another superfood – low calorie, fairly low GI,  good amounts of B vitamins and several minerals, and protective against deposits of bad cholesterol – and dates, which supply a huge range of vitamins and minerals.

Let’s see what my school age reviewers think of them.

The Recipe

The Filling

In a small saucepan, mix

  • 2 cups of dates
  • 1 cup of fresh orange juice and pulp

Bring it up to the boil then turn it off and allow to soak while you make the crust.

The Crust

Into your food processor, put

  • 1½ cups of wholemeal plain flour
  • 1½ cups of rolled oats
  • ½ teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 good teaspoon of grated orange rind
  • 100 ml of honey
  • 100 ml of macadamia oil, or other mild flavoured oil

Pulse briefly to partly cut up the oats and mix thoroughly.

Assembling

  • Grease a 20 cm square baking pan and press half the crust into it.
  • Process the filling briefly to break up the dates and make a spreadable mix.  Spread over the base.
  • Cover with the rest of the crust and press it down.
  • Bake in a moderate oven for about half an hour until browned.
  • Cool in the tin, then cut into squares or fingers.
{ 11 comments… add one }
  • lewie August 23, 2010, 1:35 pm

    Yumm sticky date between a crumble. with a tangy orange taste yes good.
    put it in the calender as a date to remember to eat more sticky date cake.

  • ned August 23, 2010, 4:05 pm

    mmmmm…..dee-lishhh-ousss!!!!

  • ned August 23, 2010, 4:08 pm

    liked the dates. liked the pastry, but bit too much orange. Overall 9/10. mmmmm…..dee-lishhh-ousss!!!!

  • Sue August 23, 2010, 6:12 pm

    Delcious and yummy as well. I have always loved date slice and this one is even better with the orange flavour, yum…..and the top held together really well.
    I will definelty be making this one. Thanks Linda

  • Joe Landers August 23, 2010, 6:16 pm

    Wow. Nice work. Perfect mix of soft, not too dry, fruit, and not too crumbly surrounds. Very more-ish. (Actually I had some of Oak’s too, because it was so more-ish)

  • Oak Landers August 23, 2010, 6:44 pm

    i liked it lots !!!!! it was yummy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!the only way it could of been beter was if it was not as rich!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Anna Johnston August 24, 2010, 12:20 pm

    Yesss! It does read a bit like sticky date pudding, only in a crunchy. Nice one 🙂

  • cityhippyfarmgirl August 28, 2010, 12:42 pm

    These look good. I’ve been playing around with oranges and dates lately too, there seems to be an endless concoction of deliciousness with those basic two ingredients.

  • Clare August 29, 2010, 1:08 pm

    I put this in the oven about 20 minutes ago and it is starting to smell fabulous! I can’t wait to try them

  • Mama Shay October 2, 2013, 11:46 am

    These were absolutely delicious and simple. I will try mixing some ground pecans into the dates mixture next time. Fantastic recipie!!

  • Krankywitch July 3, 2016, 8:27 pm

    My 53 going on 14yo hubby loved this is his lunchbox.
    Thankyou for a great healthy recipe
    I didn’t use the baking powder though. Did you know that it contains aluminium? I make up my own from bicarb and cream of tartar as a ratio of 1:2
    I’m looking forward to trying some of your other lunchbox treats for the middle aged teenager in my life 🙂

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