cranberry-date bars

Cranberry-Date Bars

from Better Homes & Gardens’ Classic Christmas Cookies, copyright 1992.

(note: These are fantastic!  But you may want to think twice before making them when your PMS’ing and craving sugar lest you eat half the pan by yourself.  Just a thought.  Not that I did that or anything.)

  • 1 12-ounce package (3 cups) cranberries
  • 1 8-ounce package chopped pitted dates
  • 1/4 C. water (I used about 1/2 C.)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 C. flour
  • 2 C. oats (regular or quick-cooking rolled)
  • 1 1/2 C. brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 C. margarine or butter, melted
  • 2 C. powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. orange juice (plus extra, if necessary)
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla

For filling, in a medium saucepan combine cranberries, dates, and water.  Cook, covered, over low heat for 10 to 15 minutes or till cranberries pop, stirring frequently (emphasis mine).  Stir in the 1 teaspoon vanilla.  Set filling aside.

In a large mixing bowl stir together flour, oats, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt.  Stir in melted margarine or butter till well blended.  Pat half (I used slightly more than half) of the oat mixture onto the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking pan.

Bake in 350 degree oven for 8 minutes.  Carefully spread filling over baked oat mixture.  Sprinkle with the remaining oat mixture.  Pat gently.  Bake for 20 to 22 minutes more or till golden brown.  Cool in pan on a wire rack.

For glaze, in a medium mixing bowl combine powdered sugar, orange juice, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Stir in enough extra orange juice, 1 teaspoon at a time, till of drizzling consistency.  Drizzle glaze over cooled mixture in pan.  Cut into bars.  Makes 32 cookies.

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