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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Apple Date Crunch Bars

My grandmother sent a large amount of apples from her orchard to us, and I decided to adapt one of my go-to recipes for the fall fruit instead of making a traditional apple pie or apple cake. So, I tweaked my Cranberry Crunch Bars recipe and came up with Apple Date Crunch Bars! They're quite reminiscent of apple pie but don't require a fork and can be eaten for breakfast since they contain oatmeal! :) These disappeared too quickly for me to get any pictures.

Also, I'm not sure what kind of apples I used, but a Red Delicious or Macintosh would probably work well. Or, you could use a mixture of sweet and tart apples and adjust the sugar to taste.

Apple Date Crunch Bars

1 cup sugar
3 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 cup water
3/4 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 to 3 cups sliced apples (don't have to peel)
3/4 cup chopped pitted dates
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves

Combine the sugar, cornstarch, water, vanilla, apples, and dates in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in spices. Let cool slightly.

Crumb Topping:

1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup butter, melted

Mix oats, brown sugar, flour, and melted butter until combined. Sprinkle ~half of the crumbs into the bottom of a greased 9x13 pan. Spread apple filling over the crumbs and top with remaining crumbs. Bake at 350F for ~45 minutes or until the edges are slightly brown and caramelized.

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