Almond-Apricot Granola Bars for the Victor!

After a stiff competition we have a winner!! Angel correctly identified the Flamingo pictured in the first official give-away contest on Anti-bland. Constructed in 1973 by Alexander Calder, the Flamingo currently graces the Federal Plaza in downtown Chicago, IL. The vermilion color of the sculptor is striking and despite its size it appears surprisingly graceful, flowing, and mobile. On Tuesdays a small farmer’s market assembles at its underside and if I allow my imagination to run wild, the Flamingo almost looks as if dancing midst the hustle and bustle of the people underneath.

Congratulations Angel!!

In order to determine the prize “cookie” I sought help from The New York Time’s Mark Bittman. His Almond-Apricot Granola Bars met all my standards for this very special “cookie”:

• Sturdy texture – prevent the delivery of just crumbs and no cookie.
• Extended shelf-life –incorporate mailing time and reduce pressure to consume all cookies at once because they might go bad.
• Nutritious – encourage guilt-less snacking.
• Tasty – duh!
• Pretty – a good lookin cookie doesn’t hurt.
• Versatile – Can be dipped in milk. Eaten with yogurt or ice cream. Or bartered for a bus pass.

Almond-Apricot Granola Bars adapted from Mark Bittman’s column, The Minimalist; original recipe and video can be found here.

2 cups old fashion rolled oats.
3 tbsp ground flax seed.
3 tbsp almond butter.
3 tbsp apricot preserves.
2 tbsp honey.
1.5 cups chopped walnuts and peacans.

Over low heat, mix together almond butter, apricot preserves, and honey. In a large bowl mix together rolled oats, ground flax seeds and nuts. Add the wet ingredients. Mix with a wooden spoon.

Grease a brownie pan or a small cookie sheet. The size will determine the thickness of the bars. Pour a tablespoon or two of oil on the bottom of the pan and spread. Over it put a clear plastic wrap larger than the pan by a couple of inches on all sides. Add the Granola mixer. Using another clear plastic over it, flatten the mix evenly. Using the plastic will prevent sticking. Once flat, cover with the same plastic and let sit for 40 minutes (or overnight in the fridge). Cut into pieces and enjoy.

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Chika Gujarathi is a freelance writer based in Raleigh, NC. She writes about everything from travel, food, books, and family. Her current project includes a series of children's books to teach Hindi. She is a native Tar Heel who has also lived in Washington DC and Chicago.

4 thoughts on “Almond-Apricot Granola Bars for the Victor!

  1. By the way, I have been keeping these in the freezer so I don't eat them all in one sitting. I am going to have to make this now because I am on the last bar, which is why I am back on your blog. I saw Bittman used granola, but I could've sworn you used oats. Your version is definitely better. <3

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  2. I used Oats due to the lack of other items called for by Bittman. It's hard to mess up as yo can see. I will be making my second batch pretty soon. May be it's time for a new contest.

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