My dear friend Charlotte, grand master of all things community gardening, architecture, breaststroke, raw foods, yoga, and world travel, donated a recipe to me called “Best Bars.” While I did not have all of the ingredients on hand for these dense, yummy-licious, gluten-free beauties, I improvised and created something handy, delicious, and nutrient-filled. I can’t wait to make everyone at school drool as I whip one of these out of my lunch bag (I still have my Pepsi lunch bag from 2006!):
Char Char’s “Best” Bars:
4 c. quick oats (gluten-free, for you Celiacs)
1/3 c. corn syrup, or brown rice syrup
1/3 c. walnut oil, or other nut/seed oil
2/3 c. maple syrup (I used 1/3 c. honey and 1/3 c. agave)
1 c. semisweet chocolate chips, or carob chips
1 t. vanilla
1/2 c. ground flaxseed meal
1/4 c. each of: dried cranberries (or dried cherries, or raisins), sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and hemp powder (I have used either raw wheat germ or a rice protein powder instead).
Preheat oven to 350F
Spread oats onto rimmed baking sheet, and bake 10 minutes, stirring twice to avoid burning.
Stir remaining ingredients in large bowl, add warm oats, and mix well.
Using a piece of wax paper, press mix into oiled 9×13 baking pan. Press very firmly to compact the mix as much as possible.
Bake 25-30 minutes, until golden. Cool and cut into bars.
Enjoy as a snack, smothered with peanut butter or chocolate, with milk, with tea/coffee, as a post-workout treat, or pre-workout energizer (ideally an hour or more before intense exercise!).