Preheat oven to 375F
Combine dates and 1 tablespoon of the flour in a small pan. Add the water and simmer the mixture for 10 minutes or until thickened. Add the vanilla. Remove the mixture from the heat and set aside.
Combine the brown sugar with the flour, baking soda and oats. Add the shortening or oil, stirring as you pour. Combine but don't over mix.
Spread 1/2 of the oat mixture in the bottom of a buttered or greased 12 x 8 x 2 pan, and press the dough firmly with your fingers.
Spread the date mixture over the bottom layer carefully, taking care not to disturb the bottom crust.
Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture over the top of the date filling, pat smooth.
Bake for 20 minutes or until done. The top should be lightly golden brown. Cool the bars in the pan then cut into 2" bars.
Note: We modified the original recipe including: Reduced brown sugar from 1 cup to 3/4 cup, added 1/4 tsp salt, reduced oil from 1/2 cup to 1/3 cup.
Amount Per Serving
Calories From Fat (25%) 46.75
% Daily Value
Total Fat 5.33g 8%
Saturated Fat 0.46g 2%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 119.4mg 5%
Potassium 152.43mg 4%
Total Carbohydrates 33.72g 11%
Fiber 2.37g 9%
Protein 2.52g 5%