Of course, our resident fig-lover, VeggieGirl was not shy about putting the sweet power of the fig to the test. She is bravely entering a virtually sugar-free fig dessert (just a touch of agave) into a sugary baking contest, but if I dare say so, I think she has a pretty good shot! VeggieGirl’s Figgy Bars may be sweet, but they are healthy enough for an afternoon snack, a lunchbox treat, or even a quick breakfast on-the-go!
Since I made quite a few changes to the original recipe, I thought I would post my version, below. If the amount of water sounds like a typo, it is not – despite the large amount of liquid, the bars were still firm and delicious, with just the right amount of moistness! So, if you like a drier bar, then simply reduce the water (or, just use the original amount of water that the recipe calls for, and add more, as needed):
As evidenced in the photo above (which was taken about a day-and-a-half after I made the bars), it is safe to say that these Figgy Bars were a hit (my family LOVED them, and said that they were better than the store-bought variety that they grew up with). I must admit, that while this recipe was certainly a little more challenging than previous baked goods that I have made, I was extremely pleased with the outcome (especially the taste! quite scrumptious!).
Figgy Bars (adapted from this recipe):
- 8 ounces dried figs (one round package)
- 4 ounces pitted dates
- 1 tbsp. agave nectar (or other liquid sweetener)
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- ¼ tsp. cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp. ginger
- 1 cup regular or quick oats, ground in blender until fine
- 1 cup regular or quick oats, uncooked (not instant oatmeal)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 4 ounces unsweetened apple sauce
- 3 tbsp. agave nectar (or other liquid sweetener)
- ½ cup water
- Snip off the figs' stems, and put them, the dates, and the almonds into the food processor. Grind to a coarse paste. Stir in the remaining filling ingredients (gradually adding in the water), and process until mixed. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375 F.
- Combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
- Stir in the wet ingredients, mixing well to a thick consistency (if the mixture is still a bit wet, then let it sit for a few minutes before continue to stir).
- Press half the crust mixture into the bottom of an oiled, eight-inch square cake pan (use a wooden spoon).
- Spread the fig mixture evenly over the crust.
- Smooth the remaining crust mixture over the filling.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, or until lightly browned.
- Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars (I suggest waiting at least a few hours, before cutting).