When I got it home and really looked through it, I found some interesting recipes. I also discovered after doing some internet searches that it has been beloved by many for decades. Score for me!
I needed to make something to take to a potluck and I had a package of dates in the pantry, so I went in search of possibilities and found these bars.
Dates are something I only learned about as an adult and I am making up for all the years I missed out on them by eating them as often as possible. To me they are like eating brown sugar, but since they are a fruit, I can feel all self-righteous about it. That's right, these bars contain dates, so they are a health food!
This makes a really thick, dense batter that was a little difficult to spread in the two baking dishes. In my oven at 325F, it took about 40 minutes to bake the batter until firm. I cut the bars almost immediately after they were out of the oven, but I think it would have been better to let them cool for a bit, since they got less crumbly as they cooled off. But on a positive note, Farm Boy and I got to sample all the bits that broke off while rolling them in powdered sugar.
Verdict: Very nice! Since these aren't overly sweet or flavored with spices, they have a nice date flavor and a light texture. They aren't a fancy dessert, but they are perfect as a nice snack to go with coffee.
Pecan Date Bar (Printable Recipe)
from The Gasparilla Cookbook: Favorite Florida West Coast Recipes
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 package pitted dates, cut up fine
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- powdered sugar, for dusting
Cream butter and sugar, add beaten eggs and milk. To this mixture add the flour, baking powder, dates and nuts. Beat well and pour into two 10x6-inch well-greased pans. Bake in a slow oven (325F) until firm, 30 to 40 minutes. Cut into narrow bars and roll in powdered sugar.