Peachy Keen Granola Bars

Patiently waiting for spring here.

I am tired of the record lows.

I am tired of the snow, sleet, and ice in March.

I am ready for warm temperatures, working in the yard and garden, and harvesting our produce.

As I was experiencing another snow day earlier this month (and don’t get me wrong, I love a good snow day now and then), I decided to order some fruit trees from Grandpa’s Orchard.   We have gotten two apple trees and a couple of peach trees from this company and we have never been disappointed.     I really wanted to order another peach tree but we already have three, so we ordered a Wenatchee Moorpark apricot and a Supermont Tart cherry.

But I couldn’t get the idea of a juicy, ripe, fresh peach out of my mind.

I poured a cup of ginger peach hot tea and did the best I could making peach granola bars.   I didn’t have any dried peaches in the pantry but I did have some freeze-dried ones.

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I used my go to recipe that can be found here and adapted it a bit.

Peachy Keen Granola Bars

1 c. old fashioned oats, divided
1 c. whole roasted and salted almonds
1 c. sliced almonds
1 c. freeze dried peaches, broken into small bits
2 T. chia seeds
1/4 c. plus 2 T. local honey
4 T. coconut oil
1/4 t. pure vanilla extract
1/4 t. almond extract
dash of cinnamon

Place 1/2 cup oats and roasted whole almonds in a food processor.  Pulse until fine.

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I keep mine a bit chunky.

Pour ground contents into a large mixing bowl.  Add remaining 1/2 cup of oats, sliced almonds, peaches, and chia seeds. Set aside.

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Combine honey, coconut oil, vanilla and almond extracts, and cinnamon in a small sauce pan over medium heat.   Stir until mixture foams and then cook for 15 seconds longer (stirring constantly).  Pour over the granola mixture and mix thoroughly to coat all ingredients.

Line an 8 x 8″ pan with plastic wrap letting the edges  hang far over the sides.   Pour in granola. Press very, very firmly. Wrap the overhanging plastic wrap over the sides so granola bars are sealed and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours.

I have two glass pans that are both labeled as 8 x 8 but one actually just fits into the other.   These are perfect for making granola bars.   I line the larger pan with plastic wrap and use the smaller pan to press the granola mixture in as tight and as evenly as possible.  They work great as a granola press.

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I love these crunchy chunks of peaches.

If you can’t find freeze dried peaches, I know that dried peaches would work fine.   The freeze dried variety gives these granola bars an extra crunchiness.

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I have used freeze dried strawberries in this same recipe with great results, too.

Oh when, oh when will we have fresh fruit from the garden and orchards?

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My Favorite Reads

Eat, Pray, Love
Running with Scissors
SantaLand Diaries
Me Talk Pretty One Day
Angela's Ashes
Naked
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Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
My Life in France
Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen: How One Girl Risked Her Marriage, Her Job, and Her Sanity to Master the Art of Living
Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise
A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
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The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo: A Novel
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