March and Munch Trail Bar

After two weeks of brain storming, we now honorably grant our hiking group an awesome name:

March and Munch.

March is for the essence of hiking. Munch, well, indicates the most tempting part of each hiking trip, I would say. (Pinch me if I made the March part less longing for. Actually it’s the other way around, I swear!) Along the trail, we constantly fuel ourselves for energy with snacks like nuts and dried fruits. After a long hike, we will then have pot luck picnic in the park. So the idea behind this is simply Hiking and Picnic. But we  escalated the name by making it more literal and rhymed.

The March and Munch hiking team is very well equipped with all sorts of talents, by all sorts of means. We’ve got someone who has high sense of direction and can actually read and understand park trail maps; We’ve got folks work at navigation company which the team benefits from by getting a hiking GPS that would track each of our trails; We’ve got technique person who then would visualize the trails to the webpages (hints: the Adventure page on this blog); We’ve got super energetic hiking experts who lead us through strenuous trails, like a mind supporter. We’ve got designers who will later unveil the team logo; Most importantly, we’ve got a diversed home cooks who bring all kinds of cuisines and treats for every trip.

Being part of the team, and also wearing a future dietitian hat, I want to contribute in some ways. So I come up with the idea of “March and Munch Trail Bar”. It will be a line of bars with different ingredients and flavors. My rule of thumb is that they are filled with easy to find whole food ingredients and with no refined sugar. ingredients that first pop up in my mind are natural nut butter, bananas, oats, cacao nibs, chocolate chips, nuts, dried fruits, and etc. Anyway, I want them delicious, healthy, and neat to be able to stuff in the pockets and bags.

Come on, let’s grab a March and Munch Trail Bar munching along the trail. 

March and Munch Trail Bar Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats (toasted preferred, you could do so as I did in the following recipe method)
  • 1/2 cup chopped and toasted salted peanuts
  • 1/2 cup plain rice krispies
  • 1/4 cup melted chocolate chips (you don’t have to melt it and could also use whole, but I accidentally melted them, not on purpose…)
  • 3 mashed bananas
  • 1 cup natural almond butter (you could use peanut butter, but I only have almond butter on hand)
  • a generous squeeze of honey (optional)
  • Method:

    1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F with the rack in the middle. Lay peanuts and oats in a single layer in a baking dish. Toast for about 15 minutes until golden brown. Set aside and let it cool.
    2. Line the 9 x 13″ shallow baking pan with parchment paper.
    3. Melt almond butter and mashed bananas in microwave or over the stove and combine. Let cool down.
    4. In a medium bowl combine the oats, rice krispies, chopped peanuts and banana mixture. 
    5. Taste it at this point, since all the ingredients are quite “munching-friendly”. I squeezed some honey in at this point. You could add whatever sweetener if desired.
    6. Spread the mixture evenly into the pan and bake for about 25-30 minutes. I baked 25 minutes and they are quite golden brown on top and crispy on the edges. But if you want extra crunch, you could bake for 5 more minutes.
    7. Finally, just wait for them to cool down on the cooling rack. Cut into whatever pieces you like.

    Mine turned out 20 squares and some crunchy edges that I munched into the tummy right after… also, I didn’t forget to pour myself a glass of milk.

     

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