Yes, I haven't done an On the Table or in the Trash for quite some time. Truth be told, I haven't made anything new, or really anything at all, in a long time. Here on James Street, we don't cook a lot in the summer. We don't eat out, we just make things that are simple.
Anyway, it has been a long time since I made granola or granola bars. I planned to do both, but B wanted the bars. I made some a couple of months ago and froze them. There was a two-fold reason to freeze them. One, they don't go stale/bad. Two, the bars are crumbly and freezing them makes them stick together.
Here is the recipe I based my granola bars on today. I tweaked it a bit after reading the comments on the Food Network website. I substituted peanut butter for butter and used half agave, half honey. I used all of Alton's measurements so the consistency would be right. What else did I change? I used a metal 9x13 pan, sprayed with oil and lined with parchment. I also used a measuring cup sprayed with oil to really pack the mixture down. Baked for 25 minutes.
I am happy with how they turned out and so is B.
One thing I can say is they are not very peanut butter-y. Still, I think peanut butter has to be better for you than butter. Maybe next time, less brown sugar and more peanut butter?
8 oz old fashioned oats, approx 2 cups
1 1/2 oz raw sunflower seeds, appox 1/2 cup
3 oz sliced almonds, approx 1 cup
1 1/2 oz wheat germ, approx 1/2 cup
6 oz honey, approx 1/2 cup
1 3/4 oz brown sugar, approx 1/4 cup packed
1 0z butter, plus more for the pan
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 1/2 oz chopped dried fruit
Butter a 9x9 glass baking dish and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread oats, sunflower seeds, almonds and wheat germ on a jelly roll pan. Place in the oven and toast for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
In the meantime, combine the hiney, brown sugar, butter, extract and salt in a medium saucepan and place over medium beat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved. Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce the heat to 300 F. Immediately add the oat mixture to the liquid mixture, add the dried fruit and stir to combine. Turn the mixture out into the prepared baking dish and press down. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.
Verdict? On the Table!