I’ve been trying to use up different things in my pantry that I bought when I was feeling kind of adventurous in my food choices. Many of these things are alternative grains like farro, black rice, and quinoa. I like granola bars a lot and thought it would be cool to use some of these grains to make my own granola. So I started surfing and looking for recipes. I found a bunch that I thought serve as good inspirations including:
Ultimately I decided to go my own way and try to make a granola that included:
- Toasted almonds
- Toasted almond slivers
- Puffed black rice
- Puffed farro
- Toasted oats
- Mini chocolate chips
The first step in this process was to create the puffed rice and farro. To do this I cooked and cooled both the rice and the farro. Then spread them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment to bake on low heat (200 degrees) for 1-2 hours.
Next I toasted the nuts and oats. I combined the nuts, oats and grains and then made a sauce of butter and honey to combine with the dry ingredients. This combination was spread out on a parchment lined baking sheet. Lastly I topped it with mini chocolate chips and baked for 1 1/2 hours at 250 degrees.
The final product has great flavor but has two issues. First, the mixture didn’t setup up into solid enough bars in the center of the pan. So it needed to cook longer. Second, my black rice was not puffed properly. It is way too crunch. So I either over cooked it in the oven or didn’t cook it enough when I cooked the rice in my rice cooker. My reading suggests I didn’t cook it long enough in the rice cooker. It needs to be mushy to push properly. So I have crunchy and messy but still tasty bars. I’m determined to make enough attempt in the not too distant future and hopefully the next iteration will get me closer to the desired product.
They do look pretty nice though.