07 June 2007

Death by Granola Bar (Potentially)

While driving to work, hunger strikes.
What should I eat?
Oh yes….there is a homemade granola bar in my lunchbag.
I can totally reach my lunchbag, which is in the backseat.
I lied.
I can’t reach it.
Stretch…..stretch a little further….was that a red light I just ran?
Ah, now I have the lunchbag.
Oh no, the zipper is stuck.
Need both hands.
Look, a curve in the road ahead. This will work out rather well, considering my car’s alignment is off and we will naturally follow the road if I remove my hands from the wheel.
Take hands off wheel, fix zipper, oh no, curve is curvier than I expected.
Wheeeeeeeeee, hey, now I’m in the other lane, surprise! Good thing there weren’t any cars next to me, and now I have my granola bar and I am happy and not dead and not hungry.

Homemade Granola Bars
My new favorite snack (besides eating store-bought icing from the tub). Every bite tastes delightfully different, depending on the particular combination of the various little goodies in each piece.
This is a huge double batch, so it makes enough for two people to have at least one granola bar every day for two weeks. (I suppose I could have done the math for you but then if I was wrong you would get mad at me because your recipe didn’t make enough granola bars but this way I can just say oh you must have eaten them too fast you are such a pig)

3 cups rolled oats (old-fashioned or instant)
1 ½ cups pecans, chopped
¼ cup flax seeds
½ cup sesame seeds

2 generous cups puffed brown rice cereal
2 cups dried fruit, chopped (I used apricots, cranberries, cherries and raisins)

1 cup honey or brown rice syrup
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup pomegranate molasses or 2 tablespoons butter (optional)
¼ cup brown sugar (optional)
2 teaspoons vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Spread first 4 ingredients on 2 baking pans and toast for about 15 minutes, or until you can smell the aromas from the toasted nuts.
When oat mixture is toasted, mix in the fruits and the rice cereal.

Meanwhile, heat the honey (or brown rice syrup), salt, sugar (if using), molasses (if using), and butter (if using) in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until ingredients are well combined. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Add the mixture to the oats and mix well.

Spread the mixture evenly into 2 greased/buttered pans. How thick? Your choice.
Press firmly so that everything sticks together.
Bake for about 20 minutes, until the granola turns golden.

When you take the granola out of the oven, only let it cool a little bit before you slice into bars. Wait until the bars are completely cool before you remove them from the pan.

Wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container. Mine have lasted 2 weeks, so yours might last longer if you don’t eat them all first.


LEO said...

Oh! Erielle! No need to approve this "comment" for your blog, I just didn't have your email - but, 1/4 what of pomegranite molasses? I have some of that stuff of Trader Joe's and I'm dying to use it, but I have no idea what to do with it. Thus I need instruction. I've also been buying dried fruit and nuts like there's some reason to hoard them, but I never actually use them.


Erielle said...

Thanks for catching that Lauren, I'll fix that. It should be 1/4 cup pomegranate molasses (I'm putting this in the comments because I couldn't find your email, either.)
I have used pomegranate molasses in a pomegranate gin cocktail as well as for a fennel-orange relish on top of salmon.
And I haven't blogged about this, but there's a recipe on epicurious for lamb kebabs with a pomegranate-cumin marinade-glaze, and that meal was so good that I could eat it everyday of my life.
They also say you can put pomegranate molasses in salad dressings, especially salads with walnuts.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Erielle, these really look like totally worth driving crazy for. :)

tammy said...

I totally eat store-bought frosting from the tub, too. Got some in the fridge as we speak. I should really try to break that habit with granola.

Steph said...

ohh...nice work! these look fantastic.

noémie said...

I crave for these kind of little bars and for granola. I have also posted a recipe of granola if you want to look at it:
I will try yours soon!

Abbie said...

Dang, you've really gotten some mileage out of that pomegranate molasses. I think I need to break down and buy some. These look delicious.

Kate said...

These sounds terrific....I am always looking for a good snack to make. I do love granola bars but not store bought.....ewww.

Thanks for posting this recipe and I was glad to hear that your 'snack attack' didn't lead to anything fatal.

evinrude said...

Erielle! Granola bars are my favourite too and yours look yummy! *hint* =D I made a batch a couple of months ago too and I still have them! I didn't use that much sugar and honey but they're already really sweet for me. I think that's also why mine weren't holding very well together and crumbled really easily. But it might also be why it's keeping so long. =)

Linda said...

looks delish! i have attempted to make my own granola bars but never put in enough honey and then they're falling apart all over the place. can't wait to try this recipe! thanks for posting it. love the intro btw :)

J at www.jellyjules.com said...

Those look SO GOOD!

Monique said...

Scary experience, do you really drive like that? I'll make sure I'm not in the area! hehehe

The bars look delicious and healthy!

Terry B said...

Wow. The opening of this post needs that tiny type at the bottom saying "Professional drivers on closed course." These sound worth the risk, though.

And the pomegranate gin cocktail sounds even better. Unlike you, Erielle, I used to have a drinking problem. But now I love the stuff!

Erielle said...

Thanks Patricia!

Tammy, we'd all probably feel better about ourselves if we ate more granola and less frosting.

Steph, thank you!

Noémie, your granola looks delicious! I would love to try coconut and hazelnuts in my granola bars next time. Thanks for the idea!

Hi Abbie, I am in complete agreement about you getting your hands on some pomegranate molasses. I am almost through my second bottle (it would be the third bottle if I was drinking it straight from the bottle, which is what I want to do sometimes).

Kate, glad to provide a healthy snack for you. They're probably still high in calories, but at least they're nutritious calories.

Evinrude, maybe if you tried real molasses, that would help yours stick together more but not come out too sweet?

Linda, I hope this solves the problem of the crumbly granola. Hooray for honey!

Thanks J! They taste good too- sometimes I would rather eat a granola bar than a cookie. Sometimes. Not that often, though.

Monique, usually I'm a pretty good driver. I am a messy eater so I try not to eat too much in the car.

Terry, I'm so glad your problem is gone and you can enjoy delicious beverages! Another good one you should definitely try is a cucumber gimlet, which is pretty much the nectar of the gods.

Y said...

I've been making my own muesli bars, which are delicious, but require a bit more butter than your granola bar recipe (which starts getting dangerous when you can't stop at one!). I think I'll have to try yours as well! :)

Kristen said...

I would have been really worried if you were talking on your cell phone and doing all this at the same time... these look worth the risk.

Acme Instant Food said...

We should car pool to work 'cause our driving styles are so similiar. Most passengers start out all happy and chatty but then the screaming and crying starts. God I hate that.

Actually, I'd get in serious trouble as I was trying to cut the bars while still in the warm pan--all of this while driving down the 101 freeway through Hollywood traffic.

aria said...

this granoler looks delicious, i've been into it lately too. theres this apple cinnamon flavor at wild oats that i keep going back for. it never occurred to me to make my own.

janelle said...

looks delish!

fin said...

That sounds sooo yum!

kickpleat said...

wow, that looks great! mmmm.

J at www.jellyjules.com said...

Where have you been? Miss the gorgeous pictures and yummy recipes.

Donald said...

Seeing as I now exclusively eat food made from recipes at Fancy Toast, I am currently in week three of an unintended hunger strike. Please post something soon, lest the DJ you know collapses in onto himself like a dying star.

I think that's the first time I've ever referred to myself in the third person. I'm blaming that on you too.

marye said...

Oh these look really good! Thanks!

kellypea said...

These certainly look better for my body than what I've been cooking. Definitely something I have to try.

Jim said...

Having spun out on a freeway (with, miraculously, no consequences other than grassy tires--it pays to drive in the middle of nowhere) after reaching too far to grab an errant iPod, I can sympathize with your granola plight. About those yummy-lookin' bars--what's the nutritional content? Any idea?

Kate said...

could i just order some from you...yours look fantastic and they are homemade - just made in your home ! and pls next time stash some bars in the glove compartment !

Anonymous said...

ummm so you are my very favorite blog of all the blogs in the universe and I very much miss your food narratives. Just thought I'd let you know :D

On the other hand - yay summer!

Mo said...

What a great post. It made me laugh! Thanks for that and the recipe!

Erielle said...

Y, muesli bars sound good too!

Kristen, they are worth the risk, indeed. But sometimes the crumbs get all over the car, so I should just stop eating them on the road.

Acme Instant Food, those screaming passengers sure do get annoying after awhile. I usually pull over and kick them out if they get too noisy.

Aria, yes, make your own! They are fun to experiment with.

Janelle, thanks!

Fin, yes, yum!

Kickpleat, thanks!

J, sorry for the absence. I’ll explain later!

Donald, you are sweet. I hope you have not been too hungry! We’ll make you dinner sometime soon to make up for it.

Marye, thanks!

Kellypea, they are packed with good ingredients. A very healthy snack.

Jim, I’m glad you’re okay after the accident! As far as the nutritional content, I would have to do some math. Sorry I don’t have more specific info for you!

Kate, aw shucks, thanks! Although I would surely get into an accident reaching into the glove compartment while driving, right?

Anonymous, I’m sorry I haven’t been writing. Really, I am. How nice of you to say that, though. I appreciate it.

Mo, you are most welcome. Hope they are tasty!

Cakespy said...

I do not know if I have ever seen sexier granola.

EAT! said...

I have been reading about pom molasses everyway. I can't wait to try these granola bars. thanks for the recipe.

mollycal said...

These look amazing. I've been wanting to make granola bars and I think these photos might just give me the inspiration to finally do it. Great blog!