Date and apricot oat crumble bars

Made with oats and spelt our, these are a low-gluten option and ideal for lunchboxes. 

  • Preparation time: 30 minutes, plus cooling
  • Cooking time: 55 minutes
  • Total time: 85 minutes, plus cooling

Makes: 12 bars

Ingredients

200g unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
150g porridge oats
150g white spelt flour
100g Waitrose Cooks’ Ingredients palm sugar, crushed to a fine powder (or use light brown muscovado sugar)
1⁄4 tsp fine sea salt

FILLING

300g pitted dates
130g dried apricots
1 orange, zest and juice
200ml cloudy apple juice

CRUMBLE

150g porridge oats
50g Waitrose Cooks’ Ingredients palm sugar, crushed to a fine powder (or use light brown muscovado sugar)
100g unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1cm cubes
1 tsp flaky sea salt 

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180 ̊C, gas mark 4. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20cm x 30cm baking tin with baking parchment. For the base, whizz the oats in a food processor to a fine powder. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse to make a shortbread-like dough. Press evenly into the tin and bake for 15 minutes, or until starting to turn golden. Remove from the oven and set aside. (Don’t clean the food processor yet – you’ll need it again.)

2. Meanwhile, put the filling ingredients in a small, heavy-based saucepan. Set over a medium heat and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, until the fruits are soft and the juices are nearly absorbed. Take off the heat and set aside.

3. For the crumble, put all the ingredients, except the salt, in the food processor. Blitz briefly or pulse to a crumble mixture; don’t overmix or you will end up with a ball of dough.

4. Spread the cooked fruit mixture evenly over the baked base, then top with the crumble. Sprinkle with the flaky salt and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden. While it’s still warm, firmly press the crumble all over with a spatula. Leave to cool completely in the tin before cutting into bars. The bars can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.