Oatmeal Dream Dates
1 8-ounce package pitted dates, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups Tropicana orange juice
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
3/4 pound ( 3 sticks) margarine or butter, chilled and cut into pieces
2 cups Quaker Oats (quick or old-fashioned, uncooked)
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut, divided
1 cup chopped nuts
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine dates and orange juice; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until thickened, stirring
occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
3. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar and salt. Cut in margarine with a
pastry blender or 2 knives until crumbly. Stir in oats, 1 cup coconut and nuts.
4. Reserve 4 cups oat mixture for topping. Press remaining oat mixture
evenly onto bottom of an ungreased 13-by-9-inch baking pan. Spread date
mixture over crust to within 1/4 inch of edges. Sprinkle with reserved oat
mixture. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup coconut, patting gently.
5. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until light golden brown. Cool completely in
the pan on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes 36 bars.