Recipes from April 17, 2013

From Herald news servicesApril 17, 2013 

Weekly recipes for April 17, 2013

Granola Bars

Makes 16 bars

1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon flake sea salt
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup raw pepitas
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup unsweetened flaked coconut

Heat oven to 300 degrees. Line a 13-by-9-inch pan with foil so it hangs over the sides. Spray with cooking spray. Whisk maple syrup, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Whisk in the oil. Process 1/2 cup oats in food processor until finely ground. Transfer to the bowl with the maple syrup and stir in remaining ingredients and mix until thoroughly coated.

Spread mixture into prepared pan in a thin even layer. Compress with a spatula. Bake 45 minutes, or until deeply golden. Let cool for at least an hour before cutting.

-- America's Test Kitchen D.I.Y. Cookbook ($26.95).

Cinnamon and Berry Granola Bars

Makes 12 bars.

7 tablespoons butter, plus extra for greasing
7 cups steel-cut oatmeal
3/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons honey
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup dried cranberries, cherries or blueberries

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Butter and line the base of a 7-by-10-inch pan.

Mix the oats, seeds and nuts in a roasting tin and toast them in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, put the butter, honey and sugar in a saucepan and stir until the butter has melted. Add the oat mixture, cinnamon and dried fruit and mix until the oats are well coated.

Tip the mixture into the tin, press down lightly and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Leave to cool in the tin, then carefully remove and cut into 12 bars.

Note: You can use any dried berries you wish. Vanilla extract can be substituted for the cinnamon.

-- From Clodagh's Kitchen Diaries: Delicious Recipes Throughout the Year, by Clodagh McKenna (Kyle Books, $27.95).

Granola Rounds

Serves 12.

1 1/2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup each almond flour, ground flaxseed, walnuts
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup each dried blueberries and dried cranberries
1/3 cup unsweetened dried coconut
1/2 teaspoon each ground cinnamon and salt
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 large egg
2/3 cup honey
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, stir together oats, almond flour, flax seeds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, blueberries, cranberries, coconut, cinnamon, salt and allspice.

In a separate bowl, lightly beat the egg and stir in the honey, oil, vanilla extract and almond extract. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until everything is moist. Divide mixture among 12 medium muffin cups and pack down tightly. Bake until the edges begin to brown, about 20 minutes. Let cool for several minutes before unmolding.

-- From Muffin Tin Chef, by Matt Kadey (Ulysses Press, $15.95).

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

Makes 9 to 12 bars

4 cups whole oatmeal (not quick)
1 cup dried apricots, dates or your favorite dried fruit, chopped
1 cup walnuts, toasted then roughly chopped
1 cup peanut butter
2/3 cup honey (or less, depending on your taste)

Mix everything together in a bowl, then press into an 8-by-8-inch glass dish lined with parchment paper.

Refrigerate for a few hours or until firm.

Slice into bars and wrap each one in plastic wrap and keep in the freezer till ready to eat -- they'll stay nice and firm that way.

Nutrition: 503 calories, 25 grams fat, 61 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams protein, no cholesterol, 138 milligrams sodium, 8 grams dietary fiber, 42 percent of calories from fat.

Breakfast Baguette

Makes 1.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 big handful baby spinach
One pinch nutmeg
Sea salt and pepper
2 eggs
1 ounce feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 of 1 baguette, sliced lengthwise

Put olive oil in a skillet and turn the heat to medium. Add the spinach, nutmeg, salt and pepper and give it a stir.

Let this cook only for a minute -- until the spinach begins to lose its shape just a little (we don't want to overcook it).

Whisk together eggs with about a tablespoon of water and a pinch of salt and pepper and pour this over the spinach; let this cook.

Fold in feta toward the end.

Layer this onto the baguette, wrap it up and pop it into the fridge for breakfast the next day.

Eat it as is, or pop it into the microwave for just a few seconds.

Nutrition: 764 calories, 34 grams fat, 82 grams carbohydrates, 31 grams protein, 449 milligrams cholesterol, 567 milligrams sodium, 5 grams dietary fiber, 41 percent of calories from fat.

Beer Muffins with Cheddar Cheese and Dill

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup lager-style beer
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled, divided
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray.

Whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the beer and 4 tablespoons of melted butter until a rough dough forms. Stir in 3/4 cup cheese and the dill. Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over muffins. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese on top.

Bake until the muffins are golden and toothpick inserted into the center of one of the muffins comes out dry, about 18 minutes.

Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, invert onto a wire rack, reinvert, let cool another 5 minutes and serve warm. Makes 12 muffins.

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