Choco-Date Christmas Bars

Chocolate and dates in a festive bar with a caramel topping.

For the bar:
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup crushed Weetabix cereal
1/4 cup sweetened grated coconut
1/4 chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter

For the topping:
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons 35% cream

Pre-heat oven to 350 F.

To prepare the bars, in a large bowl, stir together flour, cereal, coconut, walnuts, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt; set aside.

In a saucepan over medium heat, heat dates, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup butter, stirring constantly, until the brown sugar is dissolved and the dates are tender, about 5 minutes.

Stir the date mixture into the flour mixture until well combined.

Line a 6” x 12” baking pan (or similar size pan) with parchment paper. Press the mixture into the pan; it should be about 1” thick before baking.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until firm to the touch, or a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool while you prepare the topping.

For the topping, place the 1 cup brown sugar, 2 tablespoons butter and the cream in a saucepan over medium heat and stir constantly until the mixture thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.

Remove from heat and pour over warm bars. Let sit in room temperate for about 15 minutes, then refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Remove from pan and cut into 1” x 3” bars.

Note: Adapted from a French-language recipe by Mme Carrée of Canal Vie. Original French-language recipe.

Servings: 24

For more great recipes like this one, be sure to visit http://www.christmas-cookies.com