March 25, 2012

Bird Seed Bars

So this recipe truly is my adapting of anything...although it is a bit of a copycat ;)  Last fall, my co-worker brought me this bar that she gets at a vegan place in Portland.  She left it on my desk with a note saying something about eating it and then recreating it.  Well, after a few trys, I think I have it.  It may not be exact but it's pretty darn close. Regardless, Andrew, people in my office, basically anyone that has tried them, LOVE THEM!!!  

I will tell you, it's an easy recipe except for the amaranth.  Learning to pop your amaranth is a true skill.  I don't know any better so I'm not sure if you can buy it already popped...probably.  However, it's extremely cheap to do it yourself.  I may try and come back and add some photos but seriously it just takes trial and error.  Once you figure it out, it's no biggie!

Bird Seed Bars

"Dry" Ingredients
2 c popped amaranth (approx. 6 tablespoons dry amaranth)
1 1/4 c unsweetened, shredded coconut
1/4 c pumpkin seed or sunflower seed
1/4 c + 1T flax seed
1/2 c chopped dates, neglit ones don't have to use fancy ones
pinch of salt

"Wet" Ingredients

1/4 c coconut oil (measured after it is melted)
1 c brown rice syrup
1 c peanut butter or homemade nutella if you have it
2 T water

TO POP THE AMARANTH:  Find a pan and a clear lid that fits it well.  Heat the pan until very hot.  Take it off of the burner, put a tablespoon of the amaranth in the pan, cover and IMMEDIATELY start swirling around in a circular motion.  The amaranth will start popping and turn white.  Only takes a few seconds, maybe 20-30 at most.  Take the lid off and dump into a bowl.  Make sure you get all of the amaranth out of the pan.  Heat it again and repeat the process until you have 2 cups popped amaranth.

Mix dry ingredients together with your hands, breaking the date pieces up and coating them with the dry ingredients so they disperse throughout the bars.

Heat wet ingredients in small saucepan.  Bring to a boil and boil for approximately 1 minute.

Pour over dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.  Pour into greased 9 x 13 pan.  Pat down and smooth with a rubber scrapper.  Refrigerate until firm.  Enjoy!

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