Process the dates and water in a blender or food processor until smooth. Add the date paste with the coconut oil and peanut butter to a saucepan and heat gently to melt the oil and the peanut butter. Stir until evenly combined.
Add the paste to the dry ingredients and add the vanilla, salt and cardamom. Mix everything by hand or use a hand mixer with dough hook attachments.
Once it is evenly combined press the mixture into a square form of 20*20cm (8*8inch) that is lined with baking paper. Make sure to press the mass down as hard as you can. If it is too loose, there will be air trapped in the mixture, and that will make your bars crumble once you cut them. I lay a piece of baking paper on top of it because it makes it easier to even the surface out.
If you choose to make them look a little bit fancier, then scatter the topping over the evened out mixture and press the nuts and seeds into the surface. Cover with baking paper and store in the fridge for a few hours, best overnight.
* The amount of water and dates used in this recipe equals 2 cups ready-made date paste.** Calories are calculated with the optional topping.