Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Homemade Granola Bars

Thanks to Pinterest, and backtothecuttingboard.com, I found this recipe for these delicious homemade chewy granola bars. Think Quaker, but better.

  • 4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar (see tips above)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 cups plain granola (I used the nut variety from Sprouts Market bulk section. I chose it because it was low in sugar. If you don't have a Sprouts in your town, well, I don't know. But you could always make Pam's Granola to use in the bars. It would add a step but I bet it would be so good.
  • 1 cup rice cereal (Rice Krispies, etc.) 
  • Possible add-ins: 1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips, 1/4 cup peanut butter chips, marshmallows, nuts, craisins, etc. The options are endless! Go crazy!
  1. Line two 9×5 loaf pans with foil or parchment. Lightly butter or spray the foil. Set aside.
  2. Combine honey and butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in brown sugar after butter starts to melt.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low and simmer until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat.
  4. Add the granola and rice cereal into the saucepan and fold them into the sauce until evenly coated.
  5. Spread the mixture into the prepared pans and press firmly with a spatula to evenly fill. Sprinkle the chocolate chips or other add-ins onto the top of the granola and gently press them down with the spatula.
  6. Let sit at room temperature for 15-20 minutes or until mostly cooled and set; lift out of the pan and cut into bars.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tomato & Black Bean Quinoa

Have you tried Quinoa? (pronounced keen-wah). It is such a tasty treat. I have tried a few recipes lately with Quinoa and have fallen in love with its nutty flavor and crunchy, interesting texture.
Ok, so Tomato and Black Bean Quinoa:
Zest of one lime
Juice of one lime
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 tsp sugar
1 cup quinoa
1 14 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 medium tomatoes, diced
4 scallions, chopped
1/4-1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Whisk together lime zest, juice, oil, sugar and 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper to make the dressing. 
Cook the quinoa according to package directions.
(or if you buy it bulk from a local market like I do, first rinse your quinoa, and then cook one cup quinoa in 2 cups salted water for about 20 minutes. The water should be absorbed, and the germ ring will be visible when it is done.- you'll know what I mean when you see it.)
Put your quinoa into a large bowl and toss with the dressing. Add beans, tomatoes, cilantro and onions and toss to combine. Salt and pepper to taste. Yum!
We ate this as a side dish to grilled pork chops for dinner last night, but I ate it on it's own for lunch today and it was perfect.