Newfoundland Date Squares

This is very popular in NFLD.  A “must have” with afternoon tea!


  • 2 1/2 – 3 c pitted dates, chopped coarsely
  • 1/4 c salted butter
  • 1/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp lemon flavouring
  • 3 tbsp or so of orange juice (squeeze 1/2 of an orange)
  • 2 c boiling water
  • 2 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 c butter, soft


  • Put the ingredients for the filling into a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to simmer and cook for about 20 minutes or until mixture forms a soft paste. Stir often and make sure it doesn’t burn in last few minutes.
  • Remove from heat and let cool.
  • When ready to continue, heat oven to 325F.
  • Take a 13″ x 9″ pan and grease very well, especially the corners
  • In a large bowl, mix the BASE ingredients.  Use your fingers to break up the butter and make the mixture evenly crumbly.
  • Spread 1/2 to 2/3’s of the mixture into the pan and press down firmly all over.
  • Spread the filling evenly over the base.
  • Spread the remaining crumb mixture on top, lightly pressing into the filling.
  • Bake for 30 – 40 min.  Base should be slightly brown. Topping shouldn’t be brown.
  • Let the pan cool before cutting into squares.
  • Store in an airtight container.

Thanks to lordbyron’skitchen.

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