I don’t tolerate the heat very well; I feel like I am moving in slow motion. Cooking, writing, and even moving just seem to be too strenuous. But with that said, I baked today. I had to; it felt like it had been too long.
When I went to the grocery store this morning even the produce looked hot and bothered. The peaches looked a little dull, the lettuce looked a bit listless; maybe it was my imagination. But when I happened upon the blueberries, they looked plump and juicy and ready to burst. I snatched them up with plans to make something no matter how hot it was today.
I’ve been on the lookout for some go to recipes that satisfy the sweet tooth, but are a little higher on the healthy scale. I found a recipe at tasteofhome.com that I decided to tinker with a bit. I loved that it had oats and fruit – two healthy ingredients. I had some almond flour that I bought a while back for a recipe and so I incorporated some into the recipe. I replaced half the white flour with almond flour to lower some of the carbs. I replaced the white sugar with evaporated cane juice. This is simply organic sugar that does not undergo the same level of processing as white sugar. Because of this, it actually has more nutrients than refined sugar. You should be able to find it in your favorite health food store. The results? I loved them. They are sweet without being too sweet and I love the buttery, oatmeal layers. I can see different versions of this in my future: cherry, apple, blackberry…
3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cups almond flour
1-1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
1-1/3 cups evaporated cane juice, divided
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup cold butter
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons lemon juice
In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, 1 cup sugar and baking soda. Cut in the cold butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside 2 cups for topping and press remaining crumb mixture into a greased 13 x 9 inch baking pan; set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine blueberries, cornstarch, lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup of sugar. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Spread evenly over the crust. Sprinkle with the reserved crumb mixture. Bake at 375° for 20 to 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Makes about 2-1/2 to 3 dozen.
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(Winning numbers were chosen by random.org)