Tu Bishvat Fruit & Nut Bars

We went to a lovely memorial service for my cousin who died on Tu Bishvat and in his blessed (z”l) memory his synagogue planted a almond tree in their garden. I can’t wait to see the beautiful almond blooms next spring. I really miss my cousin Michael: his wonderful laugh, his boundless knowledge, and his dry sense of humor. He was there for me when I needed him and I feel a deep void when the holidays come around.

I have written about the origins of Tu Bishvat before and I always try to make a dish with dried fruits and nuts in observance of this minor holiday. I decided to make very simple, but delicious fruit and nut bars from the seemingly endless supply of dried fruits and nuts that are sold daily in every shuk and supermarket around the country. The recipe looks a bit strange because you will think that there can’t possibly be enough batter to bake into bars, but it works, and the brown sugar does not make the bars sickeningly sweet.

Fruit and Nut Bars
Servings: 16 bars
  • 1/3 cup of flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup walnuts chopped
  • 3/4 cup pecans chopped
  • 1/2 cup cranberries
  • 3/4 cup dates pitted and cut into quarters
  • 3/4 cup prunes pitted and cut into quarters
  • 1 cup dried apricots cut into quarters
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Preheat the oven to 160C (325F). Line an 8 x 8 inch (20 x 20 cm) baking pan with aluminum foil and set aside.
  2. Put the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and mix with a fork. Stir in the brown sugar, walnuts, pecans and dried fruit. Mix with your hands making sure that the fruit and nuts are coated with the flour mixture.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg and the vanilla with a whisk or stick blender until pale and thick. Add the egg mixture to the fruit and nut mixture and mix until all the fruit and nut pieces are coated with the batter. Spread into the prepared pan, pressing to even it out.
  4. Bake for about 35 to 40 minutes, or until the batter is golden brown and has pulled away from the sides of the pan. Cool the bars on a wire rack and use a sharp knife to cut into squares.
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Written by Baroness Tapuzina

Michelle Nordell (aka Baroness Tapuzina) was a foodie from the womb growing up in the House of Weird Vegetables, so named by a family friend because all of the unusual and exotic food cooked and eaten there. She loves to change recipes using herbs from her garden and spices from the spice shops she enjoys visiting.

3 thoughts on “Tu Bishvat Fruit & Nut Bars

  1. Sorry about your cousin,it is so hard to loose people close to us.
    I love that hanging tree in Yafo,also have a picture of that.
    Fruit and nut bars are so yummy!

  2. That is a sweet story. Your fruit and nut bars look very interesting. Your comment that it will seem to be not enough batter for all the fruit reminds me of an English fruit cake recipe that I made ages ago that had a similar note. The batter for that cake was a sort of pound cake or butter cake type. I noticed that you didn’t add fat to yours, which is great. Do you think the nuts gave enough richness so that no other fat was needed?

    1. Yes, the nuts definitely made up for the lack of any other fat. The pecans gave enough richness. You could also use cashews.

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