Thursday, June 2, 2011

Raspberry Oat Bars

Raspberry Oat Bars

Back when I used to buy granola bars, Nutrigrain bars were one of my favorites. Soft, full of sweet fruit like filling, I bought them often so I could take them in lunches. Last year I resolved to stop buying packaged granola bars, and so I said goodbye to Nutrigrain bars forever. I won't lie and say I don't miss them, because honestly, I kind of do.

Fortunately, these raspberry oat bars came to my rescue. No, they aren't just like Nutrigrain bars, instead they are better. Full of oats, whole wheat flour, and nuts, you can change up the jam filling to whatever flavor you like, and switch the nuts around too. Use all whole wheat flour if you want. Try almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, along with blueberry, apricot, or rhubarb jams and see what happens. They are so easy to make your kids can help you, and they slice into nice pieces to enjoy with a glass of milk or cup of tea. They also pack well in lunches and you can freeze them too.

Now if I could just stop EATING them....

Want a Bite?

Adapted from Rebar Modern Food Cookbook

3/4 cup flour
3/4 whole wheat flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups walnuts (I used pecans), chopped
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup + 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 egg
1 cup raspberry jam (I used a little more)

Pre heat your oven to 350 F.

Lightly grease a 10x15 inch baking pan, or if you are like me and am a huge fan of parchment paper, then hack off a piece and line the pan.

Measure the flours, oats, nuts, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, butter, and brown sugar into a large mixing bowl. With an electric mixer, combine the ingredients until it comes together like a crumble mixture. (you could also do this in a food processor, but I think it would make the nuts into tiny pieces, which might not be your thing)

Remove about 1/3 of the mixture from the bowl and set aside.

Crack an egg into the remaining oat mixture and blend well. Press it into the pan you had lined with parchment or greased and then put it in the oven for about 10-12 minutes, until lightly browned.

Spread your jam all over the baked crust, right out to the edges. I added more jam because it looked super thin to me. Then sprinkle the reserved oat crumble all over the surface of the bars, covering them evenly. Bake about another 12-15 minutes.

Cool completely before cutting into bars. If you want to make these a special dessert, I recommend serving them with a really good vanilla ice cream.

Makes a good sized pan. The recipe says 15 but I think I'd likely cut them smaller.
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