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Save-the-Date-for-Bat-Week Granola Bars

Bat Week Recipe - Date Granola Bars

Submitted by Thelma Redick, Co-chair of Bat Week
Country of origin: United States (Pennsylvania)

Ingredients:
1 cup (pitted) dates (bat-pollinated)
1 1/2 cups quick cook oatmeal (dry)
1/3 cup unsalted cashews (bats spread seeds)
1/3 cup dried cherries (bat-protected)
1/3 cup almonds (bat-protected)
1/4 cup honey or agave syrup
1/4 cup nut (bat-protected) butter (your choice)
coconut for garnish. optional (bat-pollinated)

You will need 8 x 8 inch pan (or similar); food processor (or hand chop); foil or plastic wrap; non-latex gloves (recommended if mixing by hand)

Directions:
Pulse pitted dates in a food processor until cubed; or cut by hand carefully. Blend and chop dried cherries, almonds and cashews; pulse or chop gently—do not pulverize (use ‘pulse’ setting).  In a microwave-safe bowl, mix nut butter and honey (or agave syrup). Place in microwave on low for 15-30 seconds, just to soften the nut butter and honey/agave so it is easy to stir into dry mixture. Once softened, fold in the oats, dates, nuts and cherries. If you find it difficult to mix, you can also mix this by hand (but it does get sticky, so we suggest using a glove on your hand). Once well mixed, spread the mixture evenly into the 8 X 8” pan. Place a piece of foil or plastic wrap on top, and gently press to even out granola until it is flat. Garnish with coconut. Put the pan in the freezer for one hour, until firm. After one hour, remove pan and gently cut pieces into desired sizes. Plate, serve, and enjoy. May also be kept frozen up to 2 weeks if wrapped and packaged well after slicing.

Additional information:
Celebrate the many ways that bats help humans and support our ecosystems with these chewy and crunchy no-bake granola bars featuring ingredients pollinated or protected by bats—including super nutrient-rich dates. Dates are an amazing food source for humans, proving antioxidants, a small amount of protein, a good source of fiber, Vitamins C and D along with minerals like phosphorous, potassium, calcium, copper, manganese and magnesium which can help with bone health. And when people tell you how tasty your date and nut granola bars and remind them to “Save the date for Bat Week: October 24-31!”