Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars


 Prep Time : 15 Minutes | Cook Time : 5 Minutes | Total Time : 30 Minutes | Difficulty : Easy

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars

If you read this blog regularly you may get the impression that I spend 97.3% of my waking hours snacking. While this is not quite the case, I am a big fan of the snack. In particular I am a fan of having healthier home made snack options around to keep you fuelled throughout the day. Today’s recipe is a very loose adaptation of a couple of recipes that uses one of my favourite ingredients at the moment – malt syrup. Many of you may remember being fed spoons of it as children, but it’s malty, not-too-sweet flavour is great in baking. I did experiment in making these using coconut oil instead of butter to try and eliminate dairy altogether. The ‘caramel’ wouldn’t come together properly and the oil just floated on top. In the end I gave up and went back to butter. With less than a teaspoon per bar, there’s probably more on a slice of toast and it’s not worth sweating over. These bars are easy to make, just make sure you are paying attention while cooking the goo!

Line an 11 by 7 inch shallow pan with baking paper. Chop the nuts and dried fruit into small pieces. It makes it easier to distribute them throughout the mixture and also makes it easier to cut the bars up without breaking them. Mix the oats, rice bubbles, nuts, seeds and fruit in a large bowl.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -2

Measure the butter, brown sugar, malt syrup and peanut butter into a large frying pan. It should have a heavy base and preferably be stainless steel. Avoid non-stick coating if you can. We are using a frying pan because it’s much easier to mix in the dry ingredients than poking around in a saucepan.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -3

Melt the caramel ingredients together over a low heat stirring pretty much constantly. As it starts to bubble, stir and watch as it thickens.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -6

You need to stir to keep it from catching. It will only take a couple of minutes to get fairly thick and start to stay together in a mass.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -7

Once this happens it’s ready! you can test a drop in a cup of cold water to see if it’s at the soft ball stage, but it happens quickly so it’s easier to go by the visual clues. It also doesn’t matter if the mixture is a bit soft or a bit firm.

Throw in all the dry ingredients and stir/mash/fold it together until the caramel is evenly distributed around all the other stuff and it’s sticking together.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -9

It will look like there is not enough goo, but there is. You only need just enough to make the bars hold together when they are pressed and cut, and to give a little flavour.

Press the mixture into the prepared pan. Pack it down to form a firm, solid layer.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -10

Sprinkle a couple of tablespoon of dark chocolate chips over the top if you like and press them in to help them stick.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -12

Chill the bars in the fridge for 10 minutes or let them cool at room temperature until cold.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars -14

Cut into 16 small bars or 32 bites. The uncut slab can be quite firm when you first cut them up and the bars will soften a bit over time.

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars

Individually wrap the bars, and you’re all ready for any snacking emergency!

Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars


Prep Time : 15 mins | Cook Time : 5 mins | Total Time : 30 mins | Difficulty : Easy | Makes : 16 bars

Chewy malty muesli bars packed with the goodness of oats, nuts, fruit and seeds.

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (170 grams) wholegrain rolled oats
  • 1 cup (30 grams) rice bubbles
  • 1/2 cup (75 grams) pistachios or other nuts
  • 1/3 cup (75 grams) dried apricots or other dried fruits
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
  • 4 tablespoons (55 grams) butter
  • 4 tablespoons (100 grams) barley malt syrup (Maltexo in NZ)
  • 4 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips (optional)

– If using metric cups, reduce volume measures by 1 tablespoon for every cup of dry or liquid ingredients – 

Equipment:

  • Large frying pan (preferably without non-stick coating)
  • 11 x 7 inch shallow pan lined with baking paper

Directions:

Line an 11 by 7 inch shallow pan with baking paper. Chop the nuts and dried fruit into small pieces. It makes it easier to distribute them throughout the mixture and also makes it easier to cut the bars up without breaking them. Mix the oats, rice bubbles, nuts, seeds and fruit in a large bowl.

Measure the butter, brown sugar, malt syrup and peanut butter into a large frying pan. It should have a heavy base and preferably be stainless steel. Avoid non-stick coating if you can. We are using a frying pan because it’s much easier to mix in the dry ingredients than poking around in a saucepan.

Melt the caramel ingredients together over a low heat stirring pretty much constantly. As it starts to bubble, stir and watch as it thickens.

You need to stir to keep it from catching. It will only take a couple of minutes to get fairly thick and start to stay together in a mass.

Once this happens it’s ready! you can test a drop in a cup of cold water to see if it’s at the soft ball stage, but it happens quickly so it’s easier to go by the visual clues. It also doesn’t matter if the mixture is a bit soft or a bit firm.

Throw in all the dry ingredients and stir/mash/fold it together until the caramel is evenly distributed around all the other stuff and it’s sticking together.

It will look like there is not enough goo, but there is. You only need just enough to make the bars hold together when they are pressed and cut, and to give a little flavour.

Press the mixture into the prepared pan. Pack it down to form a firm, solid layer. Sprinkle a couple of tablespoon of dark chocolate chips over the top if you like and press them in to help them stick.

Chill the bars in the fridge for 10 minutes or let them cool at room temperature until cold. Cut into 16 small bars or 32 bites. The uncut slab can be quite firm when you first cut them up and the bars will soften a bit over time.

Cook’s Notes:

  • Use any combination of nuts and fruit that you like to make these bars
  • Keeping the bars in the fridge can make them sweat and get a bit sticky when they come back to room temperature
  • Use a regular rather than natural peanut butter – it acts as an emulsifier in this recipe to bring the butter and malt syrup together

 – Wrap the bars individually in wax paper or baking paper and store at room temperature in an airtight container. They will keep for a good 2 weeks – 

© 2016 The Winsome Baker. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

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One thought on “Pistachio + Apricot Muesli Bars

  1. Oh these look positively delicious and perfect for snacking! I’m always looking for healthier homemade snacks as well, since I tend to eat a lot when I have to write on the job, there’s something about writing that makes me nom nom nom nom nom XD

    Liked by 1 person

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