Crunchy Granola Bars

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READY IN: 1hr 35mins
Recipe by DeeDee

"Make sure to press forcefully when packing the granola mixture into the pan; otherwise the bars may be crumbly once cut. If you like, add up to ½ cup of wheat germ and ¾ cup of sunflower seeds to the oats after toasting. And feel free to add your favorite spice: grated nutmeg and ground ginger are pleasant additions to the suggested cinnamon. The bars can be effectively stored in the rimmed baking sheet, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, or in an airtight plastic container for up to 1 week." I found this recipe on the Cook's Illustrated web site. I haven't made it yet so if you make them before I do, please review and let us all know how they turn out. It sounds really good so I wanted to save it where I can find it later.

Ingredients Nutrition

Directions

  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 375 degrees. Line an 18 by 12-inch rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Combine the oats, oil, and salt in a large bowl and mix until the oats are evenly coated. Transfer the mixture to the baking sheet (save the mixing bowl for use in step 3) and spread into an even layer. Bake, stirring every 10 minutes, until pale gold, about 30 minutes. Remove the oats and lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees.
  2. Place the nuts in a food processor and process until coarsely chopped, about ten 1-second pulses. Place ¾ cup of the nuts in a small bowl and process the remaining nuts until finely ground, 20 to 30 seconds. Add the finely ground nuts to the bowl with the coarsely chopped nuts and set aside. Combine the honey and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring frequently, until the sugar is fully dissolved, about 5 minutes. Stir in vanilla and cinnamon, if using, and set aside.
  3. Combine the oats, nuts, and honey mixture in a large bowl and stir with a large rubber spatula until the oats are evenly coated with the honey mixture. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking sheet and spread in an even layer. Wet the spatula with water and forcefully pack the mixture into a very flat, tight, even layer. Bake until golden, about 45 to 50 minutes. Cool, in the baking sheet, on a wire rack for 10 minutes and cut into 2 by 3-inch bars with a chef’s knife. Remove the foil from each bar before serving. Cool completely before wrapping and storing.

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