At home with the kids. They’re making things with salt dough; I want to make something but for some reason cupcakes are not calling my name today. I check out the pantry – there’s a big, fat bag of leftover muesli that my husband obviously decided he didn’t like, after having eaten half the bag… it’s been there a while. Muesli… muesli bars. Hmmm…
I searched online for some recipes but they were mostly heavy on the seeds, which I’m not a fan of. I then looked at some old school cook books and got a bit of an idea of the ratios, and came up with my own (very flexible) recipe.
- 3 cups muesli (containing dried fruit)
- 1 cup puffed rice
- 1/2 cup sultanas (or alternatives as below)
- 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
- 125g butter, cubed
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp golden syrup
- 1/4 cup caster sugar
- Preheat oven to 180ºC
- Line a 12″ x 8-9″ slice tin with baking paper
- Place butter, honey, syrup and sugar in a heatproof jug/bowl and microwave for 1 minute
- Stir to combine, until butter melts and sugar starts to dissolve
- Microwave for 1 minute to cook the syrup, then stir for a few minutes until the sugar feels dissolved
- Microwave for 30 seconds to thicken syrup and stir again
- Place all dry ingredients in a large bowl
- Pour the syrup over the dry ingredients and stir well to ensure all ingredients are wet
- Press the mixture into the tin and bake for 15-20 minutes
- Once cooled a bit, place tray into the fridge and allow the slice to chill, before cutting into squares or bars
- I used muesli because that’s what I had on hand; it contained rolled oats, bran cereal (the little “sticks”… heyyyyy, what if they really are just… never mind), sultanas and some kind of dried fruit and some kind of seeds. If you just use rolled oats, I would decrease the muesli by half a cup and replace with half a cup of dried fruit/nuts/seeds (in addition to the half cup of sultanas (or alternative), so in the end you have about one cup of fruit/nuts/seeds in total). Even though the muesli already had sultanas in it, I love them so still added the full extra half a cup.
- Options for “dried fruit/nuts/seeds” could be: sultanas, apple, apricots, dates, currants, raisins, berries, choc chips, crushed nuts of any kind, pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, flax seeds etc
- You could substitute the puffed rice with other kinds of cereals – corn flakes, bran flakes, bran sticks, or something flavoured, if that’s your bag (or more rolled oats, even)
- You can stick with honey if you don’t have (or want to use) golden syrup, but I like the flavour it adds
- If using all honey, you could consider using brown sugar instead of caster sugar for a flavour twist
- I don’t see why you couldn’t use a sugar substitute in this, but I haven’t tried it so don’t take my word for it – I guess if you use the stuff often, you will have an idea of whether it would work or not
I wasn’t sure what the kids would make of these (they don’t particularly like store-bought muesli bars), but they quite liked them. I was a fan from the moment I combined the syrup with the oats – it smelled awesome (and I may or may not have licked the stray oats from the palms of my hands as though it were possibly my last meal, after I had pressed the mixture into the tin).
There are a lot of ingredients and they look like they’d be more trouble than they’re worth, but they are extremely easy and the end result is really good. And I know it kind of defeats the purpose of making bars, but they are totally awesome crumbled into vanilla yoghurt.