Sunday, December 7, 2014

Date Squares

When I think of dates, I think of the Middle East. And that's where I live. Date palms all around, both natural and on farms that grow dates for both local and export use. The varieties are great and each type has its own qualities regarding size, moisture, taste and sweetness. The most popular and my favorite are the medjool dates. Plump and meaty, they are rich in flavor and are good for just munching or cooking. So many possibilities  for using dates, both in baking and cooking.

Here, you can get dates by the box, by weight in the open markets as well as in spread form and chunks of date paste all ready to use. Below is a kilo block of date paste which I sliced into and used instead of cutting up whole dates. Makes life much easier!

I tried this recipe a few weeks ago and it was so so. Felt like it needed an upgrade. I was looking for a thicker crust , more cookie like.

Some of the changes and addition I made : 
1. A smaller baking pan and used less than the called for amount of dates. It was too thick for me last     time.
2. Added a touch of salt to the date mixture and much less sugar. The dates are so sweet to begin             with, the extra sugar just overpowered it. I also added some orange zest and two tablespoons of o.j.     to the date mix. Just brought it up a notch!
3. Added a touch of cinnamon to the crumble mix as well as an egg. This made the crust more cookie     like and crispier.

The end result is much more to my liking, but of course taste is such a personal thing. These are easy to make, easy to store, for a quick snack or even for freezing so you can take them out as you wish.
Yummy in the tummy!

Here's the link for the original recipe on Baked Sunday Mornings.


  1. I thought about you when I was making these-I bet you had a lot of great dates to choose from, living where you do. I too thought about adding orange-so glad you found an alternative you enjoyed.

  2. Yes, I too thought that you must have such wonderful dates there. (I feel a little guilty that I barely know anything about this fruit from my homeland...) I can't say I *love* them, but I did really enjoy these bars, especially with toffee sauce. I'm glad you made a version that you really liked! :)

  3. I wanted to add cinnamon to my crumble this time but I didn't....kinda wish I did! Yours look yummy!

  4. I love how your crumb looks so nice and chunky. And your dates look so dark. Very nice. I love dates. How lucky to have so many options. We should do a trade for something you can't get there. :)


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