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 Date Squares 
 from Barb Hofmeister 

1/2 pound chopped dates 
1 cup hot water 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
1 cup sugar 
1/2 cup shortening 
1 egg 
1 teaspoon vanilla 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1-1/2 cups flour 
1/2 cup chopped nuts 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In sauce pan mix chopped dates, 1 cup hot water and 1 teaspoon soda. Cook over medium heat until soft and thick. Let cool a little. In a bowl mix 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup shortening, and 1 egg. Add date mixture. Add remaining ingredients. Bake in a greased *10 x 15 pan  (cookie sheet) for 25-30 minutes. Cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut in squares. For extra calories top with whipped cream, ice cream or a hard sauce. 

* Because that sized pan does not fit into RV ovens,  I used a shallow pan and a deeper one and cooked these in the convection oven (one on top of the other). The deeper pan produced a more cake like bar. 

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