But somewhere in blog land or facebook world, I came across this recipe for homemade granola bars. I know, I know, it isn't exactly "cooking" but it is a start. I wish I could remember who posted it so I could give them credit... but, alas, I simply copied the recipe and put it into the documents folder on my laptop. So, whoever you are, identify yourself (if you like) so we all can give you culinary kudos!
(I decided to document the preparation of these granola bars in the style of The Pioneer Woman who simply amazes me with her skill and creativity in the world of cooking and photography. If you have never checked out her website, you should. Now.)
First things first. Here are the ingredients:
Peanut butter chocolate granola bars
1 c brown sugar
2/3 c creamy peanut butter
1/2 c butter
1/2 c honey
2 T vanilla
3 c oats
bag of dark choc chips
1/2 c raisins or cranberries
1/2 c wheat germ
I started by softening the 1/2 cup butter a little in the microwave. Of course, I always overshoot "softened" and end up at partially melted as you can see above. Oh well. Then I added 1 cup of well-packed brown sugar and 2/3 cup of creamy JIF peanut butter. I used my hand mixer to blend that all together to a suitable consistency.
To this mixture I added 1/2 cup of honey and 2 tablespoons of vanilla. (I actually ran out of vanilla about about 1.5 tablespoons... perfect example of my cooking handicap. Fortnately, I don't think it made much difference in the end product.)
In a separate, smaller bowl, I mixed 3 cups of oats (regular, not quick oats), one bag of dark chocolate chips, 1/2 cup wheat germ, and 1/2 cup of craisins. This mixture then got dumped into the butter/sugar/peanut butter concoction. Stir to combine all the ingredients well.
Spread the goodness into a 9x13 baking dish, no need to grease beforehand. Place in the oven preheated to 350 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes. Cool on the stovetop then chill in the refrigerator overnight.
Slice and enjoy!