In my first post on this blog, I referred to a day a while back when I found myself with four overripe mangos and a hungry crowd needing dessert. These mango oat bars emerged out of that scenario and have become a favourite around here! I used this date bar recipe from Taste of Home as a base, replacing the dates in the middle with a bright, tropical-tasting mango filling. I could see it working with most fruits you might have around– I may try raspberry sometime soon?
You take two mangos just on the edge of acceptability…
Peel and dice them into small chunks…
Toss them into a pan with lime juice and sugar…
And simmer them gently until reduced and beginning to thicken. You’ll then mash or blend the mixture (depending on how smooth you want your filling), add a little cornflour and a dash of cool water, heat it to a simmer again for a few more minutes until you’ve got a good jammy texture, and place in the fridge to cool completely.
Did you know that cornflour clumps terribly in hot liquids, but dissolves smoothly into cool ones? I always mix my cornflour with a little cool water before adding to sauces.
While the mango filling cools, you’ll make the oat layers:
Tossing some oats, brown sugar, flour, salt, and baking soda together…
Cutting in a bit of unsalted butter to achieve a coarse crumb…
And adding just enough cool water to bring the mixture together.
Then all that’s left is assembly (and baking, of course)! Using a spatula or a bit of baking parchment, you’ll press half the oat mixture into the bottom of a greased 8×8-inch pan and smooth the mango filling over it…
Crumble the remaining oat mixture evenly over the top…
And bake until it’s set in the middle and golden-brown on top!
Mango Oat Bars
Based on Taste of Home’s Best Date Bars
Makes 16 bars
For the mango filling:
2 ripe mangos, peeled and diced
1 generous squeeze lime juice (about 3 tablespoons)
1/4 cup (55g) sugar
1 tsp cornflour + 1 tsp cool water
For the oat layers:
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (80g) plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup (70g) rolled oats
1/2 cup (100g) brown sugar
1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter (use a dairy-free butter to keep this vegan!)
1/2 to 1 tbsp cool water, as needed
- Make the mango filling: stir mangos, lime juice, and sugar together in a saucepan and simmer over medium heat until reduced and beginning to thicken; about 30 minutes. Dissolve cornflour in cool water and stir into mango mixture. Simmer an additional 3-4 minutes until thickened; cool completely.
- Make the oat layers: toss dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Cut in butter, using two knives or your fingertips, until no butter pieces are bigger than pea-sized. Sprinkle water over this mixture and toss together with a fork until it holds its shape when pressed.
- To assemble: grease an 8×8-inch pan. Press half of oat mixture into bottom of pan. (If it sticks to your spatula, you can use a layer of parchment paper to press it down). Spread mango filling over oat mixture. Crumble remaining oat mixture evenly over top.
- Bake in a preheated 175°C (350°F) oven for 30-35 minutes, until mango filling is set and oat topping is golden brown. Allow to cool completely before serving.