Oatmeal Date Cookies

Blend a coarsely-chopped cup of pitted dates with a ¾ cup brown sugar and a stick of soft butter. Sift in a cup of all-purpose flour, a teaspoon baking soda, and a teaspoon salt. Add a lightly beaten egg, a teaspoon vanilla, whatever spices fit your groove (clove and ginger are mine), and a cup and a half of quick-cooking oats. Mix until moist through. Spoon golf ball-size globs onto a lightly oiled baking sheet and place on the middle rack of a preheated 350 oven for about 20 minutes. You can also spread this divine, sensuous, mixture–the very essence of rapture itself–in a pan and slice into bars once cooled.