ON-THE-GO ENERGY BARS
These make absolutely ACE travel food. Energy dense, satisfying, tasty and nutritious. Plus they are easy to wrap up alone or to take in a lunchbox to share.
This recipe has taken a bit of perfecting, but I think we’ve got there... the list of ingredients may seem a little long, but it’s what I had in my cupboards at the time of my first experiment and I fell in love with the combination. Feel free to substitute or experiment with the fruit filling.
Makes 24 bars
Equipment: blender (or food processor), large baking dish (lined with parchment paper or lightly greased), one large mixing bowl and one small bowl
Flapjack base mixture
400g rolled oats (not jumbo oats)
400g pitted dates
4tbsp chia seeds
Water - (16tbsp for chia mix, 250ml to blend dates)
2tbsp desiccated coconut (optional)
200g Chopped apricots (or raisins)
25g Goji berries
30g Pumpkin seeds
25g Buckwheat groats (optional for added crunch, substitute with more pumpkin seeds if not using)
50g dates, roughly chopped
2 tsp cinnamon
Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees fan.
First measure out the chia seeds into a small bowl and add the 16tbsp water. Mix well and leave to soak for 10 minutes while you prep the other ingredients.
Take your large bowl and add in the oats, apricots/raisins, goji berries, pumpkin seeds, buckwheat groats, chopped dates and cinnamon and mix together well until the fruit and seeds are evenly distributed throughout the oats.
Next put the pitted dates in a blender with the desiccated coconut (if using) and roughly 250ml of water. Blend on high until you have a smooth, thick paste. If the mixer has trouble blending, keep pressing the date mix back down to the blades and add a splash of water a little at a time if needed to help get the blades going.
When this is done stir the date paste into the oats.
By now the chia seeds should have soaked up the water, stir to ensure they are well combined (you don’t want clumps of dry chia seeds floating on the top of the water). Mix the chia gel into the oat/date mix and stir well. If it seems too dry add a splash more water to help bring it all together.
Tip the flapjack mixture into the baking dish and press down to evenly spread the mixture out at around 1 inch thick.
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, keeping an eye on it after 15 minutes to make sure the edges don’t burn. If you like you can loosely cover with a sheet of kitchen foil to prevent this from happening.
Once cooked remove from the oven and leave to cool completely before cutting up (it makes it easier to cut them neatly).