Sorry for my absence lately. I been here
We are currently training to climb to the summit of Mount St. Helens this summer, so while I have been in the kitchen, between working and hiking I have not had large quantities of time to spend with my laptop editing photos and writing posts. Not that I’m complaining (about all the hiking, work is another story). As a result of all time away from the computer, I have at least half-a-dozen recipes waiting to be edited and posted. As well as a post, in the works, about what foods we like to pack with us on a hike.
The recipe for these bars has been in my file to a while. With the combination of dried dates and cherries with cashews and almond they are a homemade version of LARA Bars. At a fraction of the cost of store bought ones.
I like the bars with small pieces of nuts and cherries still in the bars for texture, if you prefer a smoother texture, process the ingredients finer before mixing together. Also you can add any ground spices you like along with the salt.
Cherry Fruit-and-Nut Bars
~ Makes 8 Bars ~
- 5.0 oz pitted dates
- 5.0 oz. dried cherries
- 2.5 oz raw cashews
- 1.75 oz raw almonds
- Pinch of salt
Place dates in a food processor. Blend until they become a paste; transfer to a bowl. Add cherries to food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped (you still want some texture to the cherries). Add the salt and dates, process to incorporate the cherries into the date paste. Transfer to a bowl.
Add both the cashews and almonds to the food processor and pulse until nuts are chopped, but with some large nut pieces remaining. Add the fruit paste back to the food process and process to incorporate the nuts into the paste. The mixture may not fully clump together in the food processor, but rather will have a sticky crumb like consistency and should stick together then squeezed between your fingers. If the mixture does not hold together when squeezed between your fingers, add a teaspoon or two of warm water and process again. Turn the mixture out into a bowl and use your hands to knead any unincorporated nuts into the fruit.
For bars, use slightly damp hand to shape dough into a rectangle approximately 5 ½ x 7 ½ inches on a plastic wrap lined plate or in a rectangular storage container. Refrigerate for at least an hour to allow bars to firm up. With a damp knife or bench scraper, cut into 8 bars. Wrap each bar separately in plastic wrap or place in a small sandwich bags. Alternatively, the warm dough can be rolled into ball. Store bars in the refrigerator.
One more hiking photo.