Oatmeal was the ingredient of the week for Ana and I. At first I was feeling for oatmeal cookies, but then I found an oatmeal bar recipe on Canadianfamily.ca. This recipe has a different twist than the typical oatmeal bar/granola by using maple syrup, orange zest and cinnamon. The good thing about these bars is that they taste amazing. They are way better and "healthier" (as in less fattening) than store bought granola bars, but the bad thing is that they are quite addictive, I simply can't eat just one.
This recipe is made for a 9-inch square pan, which I currently do not have, so in order to accommodate my pan, which is 13 X 9 inches I increased the recipe by half, so if instead of 1/2 cup of sugar I used 3/4 cup. Knowing how much of a klutz I am, I wrote down the revised ingredients before I started and made sure I had enough ingredients, and it turned out well.
Awesome Oatmeal Bars
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 1/2 cups rolled oats (not quick, instant, or 1 minute oatmeal)
1/2 cup wheat germ or bran (I used bran)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon finely grated orange peel
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup dried fruit (I used raisins)
1. Preheat oven to 325F (160C). Line a 9-inch (2.5L) square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving a 1-inch overhang on 2 sides so you can easily lift the baked bars out.
2. In a large pan heat butter, maple syrup and sugar over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Boil for 1 minute; remove saucepan from heat. Stir in oats, wheat germ/bran, vanilla, orange, cinnamon, and salt until well combined. Stir in dried fruit.
3. Spread mixture evenly in pan, pressing down firmly using base of measuring cup. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a deep golden colour. Cool completely in pan or wire rack. Once cooled, use parchment to lift to a cutting board; cut into bars with a large serrated knife.
My plan was to make Apple Oatmeal Cake for this week and I did. But it was a disaster. =( I don't know what happened, maybe the flour listed wasn't enough, maybe I did something wrong, I don't know. All I know is that I had to come up with a plan B, which fortunately I already had. And what a delicious plan B it was. Oh, and healthy, too - oatmeal, bananas and nuts, that's healthy, isn't it?
I tried this recipe a long time ago, when I was still living in Toronto so Ann had the chance to try this cookies., too. She liked them as much aas I did. I think she even asked for the recipe, which I forgot to give her. So hey Ann, here's the recipe for you! Sorry for the (long) delay!
Just a note: these aren't crunchy nor chewy cookies. They are cake-y cookies. Delicious cake-y, soft, taste-like-this-muffins cookies. So good! To make it even better, this cookies don't require a mixer, just one bowl and a wooden spoon. =)
Banana Oatmeal Cookieshere
3/4 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup hazelnuts, chopped
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon nutmeg (omitted)
2 ripe bananas
1 1/2 cups flour
Chocolate chips - optional
1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Combine ingredients in order listed. It will be runny but that`s okay.
3. Drop tablespoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet - I didn't greased mine and it was fine. Make sure to leave some space between the cookies because they will spread.
4. Bake for 10-15 minutes, depending on size of cookies, or until the edges are browned. Mine took 15 min. Be careful to not overbake.