Colorful & comforting seasonal recipes for savory dishes, sweets and cocktails. 

Rosemary Cayenne Granola Bars

Rosemary Cayenne Granola Bars

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Mark and I closed on our first home yesterday. After we signed the sizable stack of papers and officially took ownership, we drove straight to our new little bungalow with a bottle of champagne. Last night we set up camping chairs in the empty living room and had over a few friends for pizza. It was a wonderful day. I'm soaking in every bit of it because now the packing, painting and moving continues. 

The pace isn't going to slow down anytime soon, which means we're falling back on our favorite quick-and-easy recipes right now. These granola bars are at the top of the list: delicious, uncomplicated and great to eat on the go. A weekend batch lasts throughout the week.

As a somewhat related aside, my mom playfully gifted me this tea towel a few weeks ago as a reminder that a lot of stress can be assuaged by having something to eat. Hello breakfast. 

Rosemary Cayenne Granola Bars
Makes 12 granola bars
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup cashews
1/2 cup peanuts
1/2 cup pecans
1/2 cup almonds
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1/4 teaspoon cayenne

This recipe calls for raw and unsalted nuts, but you can adjust as needed to use what you have on hand.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees fahrenheit. Line a 12x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper then grease it with butter it for good measure.

Mix together rolled oats, cashews, peanuts, pecans and almonds in a medium-sized bowl. Spread onto a half-sheet pan and toast in the oven for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  If you’re working with any already roasted nuts, omit them from this step.

While the oats and nuts are toasting, combine the honey, brown sugar, butter, vanilla extract, salt, rosemary and cayenne in a small saucepan over medium heat. If the nuts you're using in the previous step are already salted, use less salt than this recipe calls for in this step or skip the salt entirely. Stir over the heat until the butter is melted and the brown sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside.

When the oats and nuts are a finished toasting in the oven, combine everything in a mixing bowl and stir until well combined.

Pour into the greased baking dish and bake at 300 degrees for 20 minutes. The bars will still have a bit of chewiness to them, so if you prefer a crunchier bar, extend the baking time an additional 5 minutes. The bars pictured went the extra 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool until completely hardened, about an hour. Use the sides of the parchment paper to lift the granola bars out of the baking dish and onto a cutting board. Cut into bars and store them in an airtight container for up to a week, placing parchment paper between layers to keep them from sticking to each other. 

-Mallory

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