Wish you were here….

Happy Wednesday, friends!

How I wish you were my neighbor right now. In 5 minutes, something that smells SO GOOD is going to come out of the oven and we are going to sample it. It will be my first live taste test on adventuresinjannaland. I am anticipating good things. 🙂

I have a recipe I have used for several years for homemade “nutrigrain” bars. It’s delicious. Seriously. You should try it. I made a double batch of the recipe and started out to make raspberry bars as per my menu plan. Problem #1: Darling children ate an ENTIRE jar of delicious raspberry jam. No, I am not kidding. We just opened it on Saturday morning and it’s gone now. What’s a gal to do? I looked in the cabinet and found several jars of my homemade mixed berry jam smiling at me. I remembered that I had half of a jar of that in the fridge. I used the jar in the fridge and half of a new jar for one batch. All the while thinking to myself, “these are going to be delicious…probably better than the raspberry ones would have been because this jam is so fantastic.” Yes, you have now had a glimpse into my mind.

Now I was faced with a new dilemma. What about the other pan? I remembered that I was going to try a new recipe for homemade Fig Newtons this week and quickly decided to transform this recipe into something figgy. Now I was going to get “figgy with it.” This is really how I think, people. 🙂 I had two packages of organic, dried figs in the cupboard. I added a smidgeroo of sugar and some water to make a simple syrup and chopped the figs in the blender. Gorgeous. I tasted it. Yumola. After it started to warm on the stovetop, my kitchen smelled like something those Keebler Elves could be proud of. I spread my fig delight over the shortbread-oat crust in my 13×9 and prayed it would be as good in real life as it was promising to be in my dreams.

The timer just beeped.

Oh. My. Goodness. I just burned my tongue but WOWIE WOW WOW. I am a culinary genius. Not really, but these are delicious. Wowza.  I am so excited!  I have a bag of dried dates and extra “shortbread” mixture. Guess what combination I will try tomorrow? Please tell me you’ll make some, too. You won’t be sorry.

Here’s how you’ll do it:

Fruit and Grain Bars

1 cup butter, softened

1 c brown sugar

1 c whole wheat flour

1 c unbleached all-purpose flour (now you know, I used all ww, but that’s just me)

1.5 cups oats

jam – recipe says 16 ounces. I think I used about 12 for the berry ones.

1 teaspoon almond extract

Step one (if you are at my house) take the oat groats and flake them.

Oat groats in the hopper on top. See how they magically turn into flaked oats in the bowl? So much better than the ones from the store!

If you don’t plan on flaking your oats at your house (and most people aren’t going to do that) it’s okay. These will still be delicious. 🙂

Cream the butter and sugar together. Add the dry ingredients. Mix well. Add almond extract. Press half of this crumb mixture in a greased 9×13 pan. Spread with jam carefully. Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture over top and press lightly. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Wait a few minutes so the burn on your tongue will be minimal and enjoy!

I did a 8x8 pan of the mixed berry.

I made my fig bars in the 13x9

Fig bars in the 13x9

Now listen. Don’t tell the Mom police, but I am TOTALLY going to serve these for breakfast. Yes I am. If I call it a Nutrigrain bar enough times in my head, it becomes acceptable. Never mind that I don’t buy Nutrigrain bars for my family. Never mind that there’s no protein in these. There was no protein in the waffles I made this morning and I didn’t feel guilty about it one bit. Oats, fruit, (okay, jam in one case) and whole grains and…and…extract. There you go. Breakfast. Dessert. Snack. Get figgy with it.




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