As the start of term looms up these back to school muesli bars are a perfect snack for the kids lunchbox!
I used to love the summer holidays as a kid – that expanse of days and weeks at the end of the year. Day after day of hanging at the beach or friend’s pools, play dates, sleep-overs, sunburn, videos and junk food.
It seemed endless.
I grew up in a beachside town and summer was when it was at it’s finest. It was transformed from it’s sleepy self to a vibrant place teeming with holiday makers all smelling like coconut oil and BBQ sausages.
A heady combination.
It was always on the last day or two that you invariably made a new best friend, and every year your heart got broken…. As I got older those ‘friends’ were more often boys but that’s a story for another time.
That last night before school started and you were trying to cover books and clean that funky smell out of your school bag from the 6-week-old mouldy sandwich you’d just discovered and it all seemed to have wizzed passed you in the blink of an eye for another year.
Now that I’m a parent I can see that the summer holidays will be a whole different ball game.
My wee ones are still at home so I’m not yet down with the whole daily school vibe, but I imagine that once the Christmas and New Year excitement dies down it’s 5 weeks of entertaining children and juggling commitments with family.
Yep, I imagine a few of you will be looking forward to school going back. Sure, you’ll miss the kidlets dearly, but let’s face it – 6 weeks is a long time.
At least with this in their lunchbox you can rest assured that it won’t be discovered all mouldyat the bottom of their bag in 6 weeks time.
This never lasts long at all.
Ingredients (Makes 24)
- 125g butter
- 1/2 cup honey
- ¼ cup raw sugar
- 1.5 cups puffed brown rice (avail in either cereal aisle or health aisle at major supermarkets)
- 1.5 cups raw quick cook oats (these are smaller pieces and easier for little jaws and digestive tracts to handle)
- ¼ cup mixed seeds, pepitas, sesame, sunflower, whatever you want
- 1.5 cups dried fruit of your choice. I love cranberries, sultanas, apricots and dates
- ½ cup shredded coconut
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Mine is 34cmx22cm to give you an idea of how big you need.
- Combine honey, sugar and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil and stir for about a minute to let it thicken a little. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Throw all your dry ingredients into a big bowl together and make a little well in the centre. Pour over your syrup and stir it until all dry ingredients are well coated and combined. Spoon into tray and I press down firmly with a big spoon to make it nice and even but also to compact it as much as I can before cooking. Pop it in the over for about 20 minutes, depending on oven, maybe 25 minutes, until it’s golden. Remove from oven.
- At this stage, I get a clean cake tin and I press this puppy down as much as possible. The first time I made it I was picking up puffed rice from all manner of nooks and crannies so I reckon this step is imperative unless you want to eat outdoors or you have a dog that likes muesli. Leave to cool, put it on a board and cut into desired size.
- I get about 20 pieces but I may be known to cut them chunky…..cos I’m a pig.