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I found this recipe on the Food and Wine website. These taste almost identical to kashi's TLC bars. I have made this 100 times or more and I promise once you get the hang of mixing it, maybe the second go round, it will come out perfect. I hand shape them into "bars" and wrap them in plastic wrap individually, storing them in the freezer, but I have included directions for making real cut bars too. The original recipe called for 1 1/4 cups of walnuts, which are nice, but I prefer almonds. I also use the kashi puffs cereal to get the 7 grains and sesame seeds in place of the puffed rice cereal. It is very important that you cook the syrup until it is slightly thickened, the full 4 minutes, or it wont hold the bars together.
- 1 1⁄4 cups whole unsalted almonds
- 1 1⁄2 cups puffed brown rice cereal (or kashi puffs)
- 1 1⁄4 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup dried cranberries, chopped
- 1⁄2 cup oat bran
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger
- 1 cup brown rice syrup
- 1⁄4 cup natural cane sugar
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan with either canola oil or any bland vegetable based oil/grease.
- Coarsley chop the almonds and place in a large bowl. (I leave them whole because I am lazy) Add the puffed rice, rolled oats, cranberries, oat bran and ginger and toss well.
- In a small saucepan, combine the brown rice syrup, cane sugar and salt and bring to a boil over moderate heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
- Pour the syrup into the rice-oat mixture and toss to coat thoroughly. The easiest way to do this is to have two people, one drizzling the syrup while the other tosses the dry ingredients. But, if you are by yourself, just be sure you are drizzling and mixing at the same time as best as you can. If you dump it all into the bowl at once you will have a gloppy mess.
- Transfer the warm mixture to the prepared baking dish and pack lightly with a spatula greased with cooking spray. Let cool for at least 45 minutes before cutting into 16 bars.
- These will store wrapped tightly for 3 months in the freezer or 4 days at room temperature.
Love this recipeI I have been looking for a recipe that doesn't include butter or oil, and the brown rice syrup definitely does the trick of holding everything together. I changed the ingredients though so that the majority of the ingredients were dates and figs. The end result was a very chewy texture. Next time, I think I would add a lot more nuts so that it contrasted more from the chewy brown rice syrup.