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I carry my lunch to work everyday. We don’t have many restaurants in the neighborhood because my office is out in the country. Other than the Courthouse, Sheriff’s office and County office buildings, there’s not much else in the area. We are surrounded by Civil War Battlefields and 2 lane roads. It is simply rural America.
That makes my drive to work – better than most. Since we are a true bedroom community of Washington D.C. and Richmond, Virginia, most people commute more than an hour to work in massive amounts of traffic. They start driving out of our neighborhood before 5:00 a.m. and don’t get home until after 6:00 p.m. I am one of the lucky ones. While I don’t get to rub elbows with powerful politicians and indulge in amazing cuisine from all over the world, I do get to enjoy a quiet lunch with homemade sandwiches, fresh fruit, and usually some sort of Larabar or snack. My husband and I both love a good Larabar but sometimes I want to make my own. Homemade Larabars are simply delicious, easy to make, highly adaptable to any kind of dried fruit and nuts, and perfectly healthy too!
These peanut based date bars are made with three ingredients. Roasted unsalted peanuts, dates and good flaky sea salt.
Process the peanuts until they are finely chopped but not turning into peanut butter.
Add the dates and salt and process until the dough holds together and is well mixed.
Scoop the mixture into a parchment lined loaf pan and press the top using additional parchment paper or plastic wrap. Refrigerate the mixture for 30 minutes or more before cutting. Wrap the individual bars in plastic wrap or parchment paper and store in an airtight container for several weeks. Grab one for your lunchbox!
- 10 ounces pitted, whole dates (about 1 1/4 cups packed)
- 1 cup unsalted roasted peanuts
- 1/4 teaspoon good sea salt
- Line a loaf pan with parchment or wax paper leaving the sides long enough to hang over by an inch.
- If the dates are soft and fresh there is no need to soak in water. If they are a little dry, try covering the dates in warm water for a few minutes. Drain well and blot dry with a paper towel. Don't soak them so long that they start to turn to mush.
- Add the peanuts to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
- Add the dates and salt and process until it forms a ball and sticks together.
- Spread the mixture into the prepared loaf pan and press using another pieces of parchment to smooth out the surface.
- Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before cutting.
- Store the date bars individually wrapped in plastic wrap or parchment paper in an airtight container for up to several weeks.
Recipe adapted from Leite's Culinaria
Try these Lime & Coconut Homemade Larabars too!
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