Sunday, September 13, 2009
Chocolate Cherry Granola Bars
I saw this mix of cherries, cranberries, and blueberries at SAMS and decided to make these granola bars.
Makes 12 to 16 granola bars
2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
1 cup sliced almonds (E: I left these out because Betsy is allergic)
1 cup shredded coconut, loosely packed (I used unsweetened)
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ (E: substituted oatmeal pulsed in food processor)
2/3 cup honey
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cup dried fruit, or a mix of dried fruit (E: I used ½ cup each apricots,mixed cherries, blueberries, and cranberries, and mini chocolate chips)
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Butter an 8×12-inch baking dish (lacking this, I used a 9×13-inch) and line it with parchment paper.
Toss the oatmeal, almonds, and coconut together on a sheet pan and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and stir in the wheat germ. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F.
While the mixture is still warm, stir in the honey, vanilla and salt until the mixture is well coated, then the dried fruit. Pour the mixture into your prepared baking dish and press, press, press it in (wet fingers and/or a silicon spatula work great for this) until the mixture is packed as tightly as possible.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until light golden brown. Cool for 2 to 3 hours before cutting into squares — your best serrated knife is great for this.