Wednesday, May 16, 2007

granola bars à la lannae

several weeks back, i came across a recipe for granola bars from lannae of lannae's food and travel which looked especially good. the recipe itself was very basic in terms of ingredients and seemed quite amenable to interpretation, in other words, sticking in whatever you wanted. i'm sure they are much healthier and definitely less processed than the ones you can buy ready-made. this version also makes bars which are not overly sweet, dried out and as hard as rocks.

not being a big granola bar eater, i decided to cut the recipe in half since i'd never get through all of them myself with the full recipe. i also made a few slight changes to suit my taste as i am not being a big dried fruit lover. instead, i used chocolate chips, replaced the honey part with the equivalent amount of brown rice syrup and added some wheat germ.

making these bars must have been beshayrt [yiddish for "meant to be"], as i had exactly 2 1/4 cups left of my rolled oats — definitely a close call.

this is my entry for the spice café's MBP event focusing on making something sweet using another blogger's recipe; there were tons of recipes from other fellow food bloggers that i wanted to try out but time being short, this fit the bill — all was measured, mixed and made in less than 15 minutes (baking time excluded).

i imagine these would be great using various combinations of spices and/or dried fruit, nuts or kinds of chocolate. there are myriad possibilities. all i know is that these turned out great and are definitely a winner. the recipe is also completely parve (no animal products) and vegan, if using the brown rice syrup and not honey.

thanks lannae :))

chocolate chip walnut granola bars

makes 12 bars


2 1/4 c rolled oats (regular type)
1/4 c all purpose flour
1/4 c wholewheat flour
1 tbsp wheat germ, opt.
2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 - 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 c walnuts pieces (broken up small)
3 tbsp sliced almonds, opt.
1/4 c chocolate chips

1/3 c brown rice syrup or honey
1/3 c vegetable oil


preheat oven to 350F.

grease very heavily an 8 x 8 pan or line it with a square of parchment paper [the better method]. the squares will be much easier to extract this way.

place all dry ingredients together in a bowl and mix.

add the wet ingredients and mix well. note: measure the oil first and then the rice syrup or honey to make things easier. the rice syrup or honey will not stick in the measuring cup that way.

compact the mixture in the baking pan or pyrex with a lot of pressure. it should be very dense and not loose. it may seem a bit dry at this point.

bake for 30 minutes or until nice and golden. the mixture will puff up a bit but will go down upon cooling.

remove from oven and wait 15 to 20 minutes to cut into desired shapes. tip: use an oiled knife so the granola bars don't stick; re-oil the knife as necessary.

now the hard part, wait until they are completely cool or they will not hold together well.



Vidya said...

I'm going to make this soon, the pictures are mouthwatering. I'll even throw in some flaxmeal for good measure. I love brown rice syrup, tastes like caramel. But to me it has a slightly bitter aftertaste, so I have switched to Agave nectar, so good right out of the bottle.
Just so you know, I have not been ignoring your blog for the past few weeks. I tried to comment twice before, on your dosa post etc, but the comment never showed up. I was too lazy to try everyday. I hope it works today.

Coffee said...

AAH!!!!! Great!!! BB has an entry for my event!!! Thats simply great! And the bar are just too too good...... Good going there. :)

Thanks for this lovely entry. :)

burekaboy — said...

you're very welcome.

this one was just for you :)

Princess Jibi said...

this looks so great...
um i dont know if its my pc, but ur above post dont have comments enabled. but am going to comments anyways..
I love penguins, i love the website, the quizzes are so fun. I am not doing so well and I thought after watching Planet Earth I would have learned something. I guess I cried too much lol
Did you see it Planet Earth? On discovery Channel?

How much does he weigh now?

burekaboy — said...

thanks PJ; they turned out really well. (i answered your comment above so look there).

Lannae said...

Yay! Yay! I am so thrilled to see you making granola bars! I like your vegan twist on it too. 1/2-ing the recipe for a choco one is a good idea. I wasn't sure exactly what was reacting with the flour to "glue" the bars together, like the honey or the moistened brown sugar. I wasn't sure if maple syrup was too thin and not binding enough, so I never strayed from the recipe. I do go heavy on the spices though, cuz I love the aroma when baking and eating.

The bars freeze very well in a ziploc or air tight box. When I got work, I take 2 out, and by the time I want a morning snack, the bars are renewed.

Thank you for taking a chance on the recipe and making it your own! I am actually going to make more this afternoon because I am out. I love these things for a snack. They are not lo-cal, lo-sugar, nor lo-fat, they are just real food, and I love them!

burekaboy — said...

hey lannae - more than happy to have tried it out. the recipe works extremely well.

baking the two sugars causes everything to bind; as you saw from the recipe, the mixture is pretty loose initially and it doesn't look like it will hold. also, the two flours help bind the mixture, providing a gluten structure. otherwise, it wouldn't probably hold together too well with only oats.

i am sure you could use maple syrup but NOT the aunt J kind!! yech, IMO. that is just flavoured corn syrup. just make sure it's the real kind. i would use a combination of honey and maple syrup as i am not sure of the binding power of the maple syrup alone. it probably would work on its own as it is a sugar.

haha, mine didn't last long enough to freeze them. i'll do that with most of them next time :))

Shira said...

This is the first time I have used one of your recipes, and it was fabulous! I will definitely be using more in the future.

burekaboy — said...

hey shira :) - welcome & thanks for the compliments and visit.

i appreciate your feedback on how it turned out. i am trying to only things that work well and are, more or less, easy to make and taste great. if u need info about other things you'd like to try, let me know :D

glad to hear that you really liked them; this one really is "a keeper" :)

burekaboy — said...

vidya!!! - FINALLLLY your msg showed up in my blogger settings. a whole slew of msgs went for moderation and never showed up in my email notification. very, very weird. now i'll have to check there, too. anyway, i'm glad i got your msgs.

i've never tried agave but i have seen it being used more often now as an alternative sweetener. i've not noticed an aftertaste with the brown rice syrup but then again, i've only used it in baking. no aftertaste here in the granola bars; at least with my brand (lundberg farms).

adding flaxseed sounds like a good (healthy) addition, too. let me know how your version turns out and how it tastes :))

sorry for all the posting problems -- and thanks for diligently trying to post comments. much appreciated.

Vcuisine said...

This is what I am looking for. Will post my version soon. Thanks BB. It really awesome. Viji

burekaboy — said...

hi viji - thank you :) looking forward to seeing your rendition; i'm sure they'll be good.

Vcuisine said...

Hi BB, I posted my version. Just have a look when you have time. Thanks. Viji