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Bar Cookies
Whole-Wheat Date Bars

1-1/4 cups water
1 pkg. (8 oz.) pitted dates, chopped
1-2/3 cups whole-wheat flour, divided
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup packed brown sugar, divided
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Bring water and dates to boil in saucepan. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 15 to 20 minutes or until dates thicken and water is absorbed. Mix well 1 cup whole-wheat flour, wheat germ, 1/2 cup sugar, and the butter. Work with hands until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press 2 cups mixture into 9 x 9 x 2" baking pan; set remainder aside. Bake crust in preheated 350 deg. oven 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix well date mixture, remaining 2/3 cup whole-wheat flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, eggs and extract. Spread evenly over baked crust. Sprinkle with reserved wheat-germ mixture, pressing in lightly. Bake in 350 deg. oven 25 minutes. Cool in pan on rack. Cut in 2-1/2 x 1 inch bars.

Yields 36 bars.