Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Best ever granola bars
(I just love my new old plate I got at the thrift store the other day!)
For a few years now, I have been searching for the perfect homemade granola bar. When I first started my search, It was met with some failures. The first recipe I tried came out way too crunchy. It also called for eggs, which I try to avoid when possible as they freak me out. Then I tried this recipe and It was pretty good...more akin to the chewy store bought granola bars I favor. But it was not quite perfect. After that I kind of just gave up and went back to buying my bars.
But after seeing this post on Smitten Kitchen, I decided to try making them again. Most of the motivation being that I had nothing to bring to snack on at school for the upcoming week. Another big factor was that by making granola bars myself, I can save money, (music to a student's ears!) and I have control of all the ingredients. Now i'm not eating any weird substances that I can't pronounce and make me wish I was better in science.
This recipe is also super flexible. I'm sure i'll be making it again and again, trying out the endless combinations.
(adapted slightly from Smitten Kitchen.)
1 2/3 cups quick rolled oats
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup oat flour (or 1/3 cup oats, processed till finely ground in a food processor or blender)
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup wheat germ
1 cup raisins
1 cup pecans
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/3 cup almond butter or another nut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons canola oil
1/4 cup honey
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tablespoon water
Preheat oven to 350. Mix all the dry ingredients (including nuts, fruit, and chocolate) in a bowl and set aside.
Whisk the wet ingredients together and combine into the dry.
Line a pan with parchment paper (otherwise you won't get them out of the pan!) and press granola mixture firmly into the pan. The size/shape of pan will determine what kind of bars you get. Keep this in mind when deciding on which pan to use. (I used a small rectangle pan that I'm not sure of the measurements...)
Bake for 30 mins until the edges are cooked. My oven is crazy hot and at only 325 they were done in 20 mins! Allow to cool on the counter for 20 mins, then transfer to the fridge and let cool further. I left mine overnight and they were a dream to cut in the morning. Store in the fridge to maintain structure.