Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Homemade Granola Bars

Image from JessieMonds.com; She loves this recipe too!
I've been itching to get into the kitchen for a baking marathon lately, and although I've abstained, I'm definitely going to whip up a little something this weekend. Flour is one of my favorite bakeries/cafes in Boston, and although I live far away, I have the recipe to recreate one of my favorite sweet treats: Granola Bars.

What You'll Need:
1 cup dried apples
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups water
1 cup walnut halves
1 3/4 cups all-purpose GF flour
1 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp, cut into 8-10 pieces
6 Tbsp honey
3 Tbsp flaxseeds
3 Tbsp sunflower seeds
3 Tbsp millet

Directions:
  1. Make the jam first. In a medium saucepan, combine the apples, cranberries, apricots, granulated sugar, and water. Bring it to a boil over high heat, then remove it from the heat and allow it to sit for about 1 hour, 
  2. Transfer the cooled jam into a food processor and pulse 8-10 times or until a chunky jam forms. This can be done up to 5 days in advance and stored in the fridge. 
  3. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. 
  4. Spread the walnuts on a baking sheet and toast for about 10 minutes, until they become nutty and fragrant. Transfer to a plate to cool.
  5. Leave the oven set at 350 degrees and line a 9x13in baking dish with parchment. 
  6. In a food processor, combine the toasted walnuts, flour, oats, brown sugar, coconut, salt, cinnamon, and butter. Pulse about 15 times or until the mixture is evenly combined. 
  7. Dump the mixture into a medium bowl and drizzle the honey on top. Work the honey in with your hands until it comes together. 
  8. Press about 2/3 of the mixture into the bottom of the pan, and put the raining one third in the fridge. 
  9. Bake 30-40 minutes, or until the crust is a light golden brown. Remove it from the oven and spoon the prepared jam on top with a rubber spatula, covering the entire surface. 
  10. Remove the reserved granola mix from the fridge, break it up with your fingers, and combine it with the flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, and millet in a small bowl. Sprinkle it on top of the granola bars. 
  11. Return the pan to the oven and bake it for an additional 50-50 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. 
  12. Allow the pan to cool on a wire rack for 2-3 hours, then cut into 12 bars. 
  13. These granola bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for about a week. Serve them with coffee and enjoy!
Tip: These little granola bars are really a dessert. Last time I made them, I cut them up into tiny squares and served them on a cookie tray at a party. They were a huge hit! 

If you like this recipe, check out the Flour Cookbook.  You can't go wrong with any of their delicious desserts, and most are easily made gluten-free with just the right mix of flours. 

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