Thursday, November 8, 2007

Home-made power bars for busy days and long bike rides.

I'm so glad I caught Alton Brown on his granola bar episode. These bars have powered me through long afternoons at work, and very long bike rides and they actually taste pretty good too. I get that funny after taste with some bars and all the strange additives dont seem good either. I can also have the right amount, which is around 150 calories on a relatively sedentary afternoon, or I can have little bite sized chunks when I'm powering up Palomar Mountain. I've just made myself a new batch, to keep some in the fridge and freezer, and to help me on my way around the beautiful El Tour De Tucson in a couple of weeks, that I'm riding in to raise funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

I'm told they taste a little like moon cakes, although I dont really see the similarity, some say they are a little like bread pudding. They are nice and filling, not overly sweet or fatty and I like they are moist instead of dry and crunchy like some bars.

The only down side to these is you need to keep them in the fridge, they cant really languish in a drawer or bike bag for weeks as they will be gross!
Recipe-Alton brown 2005
Prep Time: 25 minutes Cook Time: 35 minutes Yield: 24 (2-inch) squares
4 ounces soy protein powder, approximately 1 cup
2 1/4 ounces oat bran, approximately 1/2 cup
2 3/4 ounces whole-wheat flour, approximately
1/2 cup 3/4-ounce wheat germ, approximately 1/4 cup
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 ounces raisins, approximately 1/2 cup
2 1/2 ounces dried cherries, approximately 1/2 cup
3 ounces dried figs, approximately 1/2 cup
2 1/2 ounces dried apricots, approximately 1/2 cup
1 (14-ounce) package soft silken tofu
1/2 cup unfiltered apple juice
2 large bananas
4 ounces dark brown sugar, approximately 1/2 cup packed
2 large whole eggs, beaten
2/3 cup natural peanut butter
Canola oil, for pan

Line the bottom of a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish with parchment paper and lightly coat with canola oil. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the protein powder, oat bran, wheat flour, wheat germ, and salt. Set aside.
Coarsely chop the raisins, dried cherries, figs and apricots and place in a small bowl and set aside.
In a third mixing bowl, whisk the tofu until smooth(hand blender very handy here).
Add the apple juice, bananas, brown sugar, eggs, and peanut butter, 1 at a time, and whisk to combine after each addition. Add this to the protein powder mixture and stir well to combine. Fold in the dried fruit.
Spread evenly in the prepared baking dish and bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 205 degrees F.
Remove from the oven and cool completely before cutting into squares.
Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week or freeze for a month.
Notes: I switched around some of the fruit, added 2 thawed frozen bananas and had 14oz tofu rather than 12 but it still was lovely. Figs and bananas go wonderfully together in this recipe. I usually just use whatever dried fruit I have to hand and almond butter subs for peanut butter just lovely. Its a very forgiving recipe!


Ole de Cronche said...

Nice article! I posted a link to iti from my Good Eats blog. I may have to go back and test a batch of these little bars now!

Glenna said...

Mmmm... yum! I've looked at making homemade power bars too. I'll have to give this one a try. Love everything Alton does. Thanks for the recipe!