Preheat oven to 325 F. Line an 8x8x2-inch baking pan with foil, extending foil over pan edges. Lightly coat foil with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
In a medium bowl combine flour, oats, and brown sugar. Stir in butter until mixture clings together. Press 3/4 cup of the oats mixture into bottom of pan.
For filling, in a small saucepan over low heat bring condensed milk and, if desired, saffron or cardamom to boiling. In a bowl combine coconut, nuts, dates, and apricots; add condensed milk mixture. Stir to combine. Pour coconut mixture over oats layer, using a spatula to spread evenly. Sprinkle remaining oats mixture over filling.
Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly golden. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes. Lift from pan by foil edges; cool completely. Cut in rectangles. Makes 16 bars.