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Week 27 – Did I Mention There Were Dishes?

Warning: side effects of living inconveniently may include frequent cooking, baking, freezing, blending, slicing, sautéing, simmering, frying and chopping. These symptoms may be accompanied by pots, pans, spatulas, colanders, measuring cups, spoons, bowls, baking sheets, and more measuring cups. These may all be signs of a more serious condition. Call your friends for support if symptoms reoccur.

I actually made quite a few things this week, and especially over the weekend. Production list included granola bars, flax and sesame crackers, multi-grain bread, anasazi bean burgers, curried ground turkey with autumn vegetables, stuffed squash, quinoa salad, and a roasted eggplant. I don’t eat eggplant, so this one was for Lisa. Pretty fancy method, eh?

Here’s a recipe for my favorite granola bars, the fifth batch I’ve made since starting this year of inconvenience. Thanks to Alton Brown of the Food Network for the original recipe that inspired me.

Better With Chocolate Granola Bars

2 cups rolled oats

½ cup raw sunflower seeds

½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts

½ cup dried blueberries

¼ cup ground flax

¼ cup wheat germ

¼ cup chocolate chips

½ cup honey

¼ cup brown sugar, firmly packed

2 tablespoons butter

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

½ teaspoon salt


Lightly grease a 9 x 9 inch baking dish and preheat your oven to 350°. That’s your prep work.

On a large baking sheet, spread out the oats, sunflower seeds, nuts, flax, and wheat germ. Toast in the oven for about 15 minutes, giving it an occasional stir.

While the grains and nuts are toasting, combine the honey, brown sugar butter, vanilla and salt in a small saucepan and heat over a medium flame until the brown sugar dissolves into the rest of the mixture. Make sure you stir this so it doesn’t bubble.

Once your grains and nuts are toasted, remove it from the oven and reduce the oven to 300°. Don’t miss this step (as I did once), or you’ll end up with REALLY crunchy granola bars! Take you oat and nut mixture and combine it in a mixing bowl with the dried blueberries. Stir until everything is equally mixed. Now add the chocolate chips and stir again. They will begin to melt a bit from the heat of the grains. Add the liquid mixture and stir well. Turn all of this into your greased baking dish and press it down firmly with a spatula, making sure it is evenly spread out in the pan. Place this in the LOWER TEMPERATURE oven (see step above if you missed it) for 25 minutes.

Once it cools down a bit, cut it into squares and store in an airtight container. I’ve had these bars last for longer than a month, but I’d say the shelf life is more around two weeks.

Plan on washing four different measuring cups, a set of measuring spoons, one spatula, one saucepan, one baking sheet, one mixing bowl, one baking sheet and one baking pan. Don’t worry, the results are worth the spoil in dishes.


About outpostcoop

I also live in another world of creativity. Visit my art blog here:

9 responses »

  1. I’m behind over here on my reading! I love finding new granola/ granola bar recipes – I kind of collect them in fact… I also love Alton, and the fact that these seem a bit desserty, but still healthy. I’ll have to bookmark this one for sure. (I’m sure my picky Boy-O will love them, too – like it says, “better with chocolate”!)

  2. What?!!! You made eggplant??!! And I didn’t get any??!!!! Yours looked beautiful, much prettier than I make for myself. How’d you do it?

  3. You’re so sweet to make eggplant for Lisa. That’s quite the roasting technique. I’d be curious to hear about that whenever you have the time!

  4. Easy recipe for the eggplant: slice 1/4 inch slices up to the stem. Fan out in a pan and brush with olive oil. Roast at 400° for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and press flat – a little more olive oil – back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Sprinkle with herbs (rosemary, tyme) and salt, and a little more olive oil if you wish.

  5. The eggplant was SUPER good!

  6. Pingback: Week 47 – St. Patty’s Is Simple, So Do It | A Year Of Inconvenience

  7. Pingback: 52 Weeks of Recipes | A Year Of Inconvenience

  8. Pam I found your blog and now understand just how great it is! Congratulations on your year of living inconveniently- now you should write a book:) I am going to try these granola bars and blog about them myself. And it goes on! Thanks, Carrie (Kathy and Avie’s sister in law)

    • Glad to hear you’re blogging Carrie – it’s pretty rewarding to look back on your food experiences – the good, bad, and ugly. I learned a lot about myself during that year, and enjoy and appreciate good food so much more than before I took on this challenge. Good luck!


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