Friday, December 17, 2010

Date Squares

(I swear to you, this is not a raisin!)

Dates are something that I have avoided since I became gluten free. Well, I never really ate them before either now that I think about it... Every once in awhile I'd glance at them in the produce section at the grocery store and think "Ew, look at those wrinkly, pruney things. I hate prunes!". Prunes seem to the be solve-all food item for some of my family members, causing me to have quite the aversion to them as an adult.  And these resembled them dangerously. 

When I came across a gluten free recipe for date squares a week or so ago, I sort of dismissed it. Then went back and added it into my "recipe database" for further consideration. But every time I went back in to said database for something, it was there. Taunting me. And today, there are date squares baking in my oven. Today, I bought dates. And even went so far as to "sneak" a taste of one as I was chopping them... 

Now, this recipe is not mine. I found it somewhere & can't seem to figure out where. It belongs to someone; who that is, I have yet to determine. I have searched through "over 500" blog posts in my Google Reader, and typed in all kinds of search words into my browsing history, but I cannot seem to figure out where I got this recipe from! If you recognize it, let me know (I have taken her photos out & included my own).

Date Squares
½ cup cornstarch
1/3 cup brown rice flour
3 Tbsp tapioca starch
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups gf oats(I use Only Oats brand which is non-contaminated)
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp xanthan gum
1 cup butter(melted)
½ lb(225 g) chopped, pitted dates
½ cup water

Mix together the first 8 ingredients fully, then add the melted butter and gently stir until combined. 
Set aside.

 Cook dates and water in a small pot on the stove, mixing periodically until a gooey paste forms.

Spray and line a 8×8 pan (I spray, then line my pan with parchment paper for easier removal of squares)
Press ½ of oat mixture on pan.
Spread date filling evenly over oat layer.
Top with remaining oats and spread out.
Bake in 350 degree oven for 30-40 minutes until golden brown.

Allow to cool completely before removing and cutting squares.

*Note: I generally don't follow recipes very well. In fact, I "can't" sew because I can't follow a pattern & end up getting insanely frustrated when it doesn't turn out. I tend more to just try something out and hope that it works. However, today while making this recipe, I had a bit of a problem. The recipe says to line the pan with parchment. Generally, this means that if you don't, your baking will stick to the bottom like nobody's business & you will be reduced to consumption out of a bowl with a spoon. However, I had already pressed the crust into the bare pan. Oh the dilemma.

On a slightly related note, we're heading out of town tomorrow morning for Christmas. These here date squares are the last of my Christmas baking. As gifts. So between not having enough time or ingredients for a second batch, I decided to do what I should probably always do & fix it. I even washed the pan before I put the parchment paper in. 

Just so ya know. Oh, and it probably wont happen again...

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