Mixed nut and seed energy snack bars
I envy those who have the power to resist a snack.
I have a pretty sedentary desk job, and I often find myself eating at my desk as a way of breaking up the day.
I particularly need extra fuel on days when I spend my lunch hour in the gym.
While I love to graze however, I also like to look after myself and watch my weight.
Which is why I'm always trying to come up with healthy snack ideas.
So, these little energy bars are just great.
Sure, medjool dates aren't cheap - but nor are shop bought snacks.
And at least if you make something like these yourself, you can control the amount of refined sugar that goes into them.
These are so simple to make. And the real beauty of them is that you can chuck pretty much whatever dried fruits or nuts you want (or you have in the cupboard already) into the mix.
They also keep for a good few days if they're kept in an airtight container, so they're perfect for making ahead and grabbing as you run out of the door in the mornings.
How to make it...
Makes about 12-15 10cm x 3cm bars
100g medjool dates
200g rolled oats
20g crushed walnuts
20g roasted and crushed hazelnuts
30g mixed seeds
30g mixed dried fruit
Half a tsp of cinnamon powder
Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas mark 6.
Remove the stones from the dates and place them in a food processor with the water.
Blitz the dates and water until you have a smooth, syrupy mixture.
Remove the date mix from the food processor and place in a large mixing bowl.
Stir in the rest of the ingredients until well incorporated. I crushed the cashews in a pestle and mortar but you can leave them whole for something with a bit more bite.
Line a baking tray (around 32cm by 20cm with raised sides) with baking paper.
Press the mixture into the tray until packed solid and smooth over with the back of a spoon.
Place the tray in the oven and cook for around 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes.
Cut into bars with a sharp knife.
These will keep for the best part of a week in an airtight container.