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Pascale’s Kitchen: Homemade energy bars

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Pascale's Kitchen: Homemade energy bars
This week, I offer you recipes for making energy bars at home with healthful ingredients.Oftentimes, when we’re hungry or running out the door, we grab something to nosh on the way. Nowadays, there’s a plethora of choices to choose from at grocery and convenience stores. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and contain lots of grains and seeds; some are covered with chocolate, and others are sugar-free. The one thing all of these products have in common is the word “healthy,” which is always printed in big letters on the packaging. Granted, many of them do include some healthful ingredients, but if you read the small print, you’ll see that most of the empty calories in these treats come from the multiple artificial and processed ingredients. Learn more about Pascale’s Kitchen here>>Anyone who reads my column regularly knows that I prefer to prepare easy-to-make foods at home, rather than buying unhealthy, store-bought treats, as enticing as they may look in their fancy plastic wrappers. This week, I’ve decided to teach you how to make your own energy bars by roasting seeds and nuts, mixing them with dried fruits and then baking them in the oven. All that’s left to do is to slice them up and enjoy. That’s the whole story.In other words, every single one of you can make these energy bars by following the easy recipes below. By investing a few short minutes, you can have a healthful energy bar waiting for you to grab every day. Changing it up, you can swap any kinds of nuts and fruits in the recipes below according to your preferences. You can use coconut oil instead of butter, honey instead of sugar, agave syrup or silan. You can use sweetened or unsweetened cranberries, add chia or poppy seeds, goji berries, or sugar-free chocolate chips. In short, the combinations are endless.GRANOLA ENERGY BARS
Use a 22 cm. x 22 cm. pan or 24 cm. x 24 cm. pan.
Makes 12-14 bars.
270 gr. oats
140 gr. whole or sliced peeled almonds
40 gr. peanuts
¼ cup pumpkin or sunflower seeds
½ cup cranberries
3 Tbsp. coconut flakes
¼ tsp. salt
1 tsp. ginger or cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
100 gr. honey, agave or maple syrup
2 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
80 gr. butter or coconut oil
Baking paperChocolate icing:
100 gr.-150 gr. bittersweet chocolate, depending on how thick you want icing to be
1 tsp. oil or glucose syrup Add the oats, almonds, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, cranberries, coconut flakes and salt to a large bowl and mix well. In a pot, add the honey or agave syrup, brown sugar and butter. Melt over a low flame until completely mixed. Pour over the seeds and mix well. Transfer to a pan lined with baking paper and flatten well. Bake in an oven that has been heated to 180º for 25-30 minutes until the bars have slightly browned and then let them cool down in the pan.Place the chocolate in a glass bowl and add the oil. Melt in the microwave a few seconds at a time until it’s smooth. Pour the chocolate over the bars and smooth with a spatula. Let it cool. Taking hold of the baking paper, lift the cooked bars out of the pan and place on a cutting board. Let them cool for 5 minutes and then cut into squares or rectangles. Level of difficulty: Easy.
Time: 60 minutes.
Status: Dairy or parve. SESAME NO-BAKE ENERGY BARS
Use a 25 cm. x 12 cm. loaf pan.
Makes 15-20 bars.
130 gr. sesame seeds
30 gr. nuts of any kind
1 cup oats
1 cup puffed rice
2 Tbsp. date spread or 3-5 Medjool dates, cut into small pieces
2 Tbsp. raw tehina
30 gr. cocoa butter
50 ml. maple syrup
4 Tbsp. honey
¼ tsp. salt
50 gr. crunchy peanut butter
½ tsp. cinnamon
Oil spraySpray a baking pan with oil and spread out the sesame seeds. Roast for 10 minutes or until they’ve turned golden brown, then transfer to a bowl. Line the pan with the nuts, oats and puffed rice and roast for 12 minutes in the oven. Let them cool and then add them to the bowl with the sesame seeds and mix well. Add the date spread (or pieces) to a pot with the tehina, cocoa butter, maple syrup, honey, salt and peanut butter. Heat over a medium-low flame and cook for 10 minutes. Mix well. Pour the mixture into the bowl with the nuts and mix well. Add the cinnamon and mix well. Spray the loaf pan and transfer mixture to pan. Spread out and flatten it well into all the empty crevices. Cover with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge or freezer until serving. Flip the pan over onto a wooden cutting board and slice into 1 cm. x 1.5 cm. pieces. Store leftover pieces in the fridge. Level of difficulty: Easy.
Time: 60 minutes.
Status: Parve. Sesame no-bake energy bars (Pascale Perez-Rubin)

CINNAMON AND GINGER ENERGY BARS

This is my favorite energy bar recipe, since it’s so easy and fun to swap with different nuts, seeds and other fun additions.
Makes 12-20 pieces.
2¼ cups oats
½ cup puffed rice
½ cup whole or halved almonds
¼ cup pistachios
½ cup pecans
½ cup cashews
50 gr. butter or margarine
1 Tbsp. tehina
2-3 Tbsp. water
¾ cup (200 ml.) honey or silan
¼ cup (50 ml.) demerara sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
¼ tsp. ginger
½ tsp. cinnamon
½ cup cranberries
½ cup raisins
Baking paperRoast the oats in the oven for 3-5 minutes in an oven that has been heated to 180º. In a separate pan, bake the almonds and other nuts for 7-10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Heat the butter, tehina, water, honey or silan, sugar, vanilla, salt, ginger and cinnamon in a pot over a medium-high flame for a few minutes until the butter melts. Continue cooking for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly. Turn off the flame and pour mixture into the bowl with the oats. Mix well. Add the cranberries and raisins and mix well. Line a pan with baking paper and spray lightly with oil. Heat your oven to 160º-170º. Transfer the mixture to the pan and flatten well with wet hands. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until it turns slightly brown. It should still be soft to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool. Use the baking paper to lift the energy bars and place on a wire rack. Let cool for 60-90 minutes. Transfer to a work surface and slice with a serrated knife into bars that are 3 cm. x 20 cm. Store in an airtight container. Level of difficulty: Medium.
Time: 40-50 minutes.
Status: Dairy or parve. Cinammon and ginger energy bars (Pascale Perez-Rubin)Cinammon and ginger energy bars (Pascale Perez-Rubin)Translated by Hannah Hochner.



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