Breakfast Bars With Oats and Coconut
A little like granola bars with their combination of oats, seeds, almond butter and dried cherries, these cookies — adapted from the chefs Michelle Palazzo and Peter Edris of Frenchette Bakery — have a soft and chewy texture rather than a crunchy snap. Perfect for a breakfast on the run or an afternoon nibble, they are lightly sweet and decidedly filling. At the bakery, the dough is baked into large, individual cookies, but, in this slightly simpler version, the dough is pressed into a 9-inch pan and baked into bars. (To make cookies, see the note below.)
- Serves: 18 persons
- ¾cup/180 milliliters smooth almond butter, at room temperature
- ½cup/100 grams granulated sugar
- ⅓cup/73 grams light brown sugar
- 3tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing
- 1large egg, beaten, at room temperature
- 1egg white, at room temperature
- ½teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½teaspoon vanilla paste or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ⅔cups/146 grams rolled oats
- ¾teaspoon baking soda
- ⅓cup/28 grams unsweetened coconut flakes
- ¼cup/37 grams dried cherries (or another soft, plump dried fruit)
- 3tablespoons poppy seeds
- 2tablespoons shelled sunflower seeds
- 1 ½tablespoons flax seeds
- 1 ½tablespoons sesame seeds
Step 1In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a handheld mixer and a large bowl, cream almond butter, granulated and brown sugars, and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add egg, egg white, salt and vanilla, and mix until well incorporated, occasionally scraping the side and bottom of bowl, about 1 minute longer.
Step 2Put oats in a small bowl, sift the baking soda over them, and beat into almond butter mixture. With the mixer on low speed, stir in coconut flakes, cherries and seeds until thoroughly mixed. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly against the surface of the dough (still in the bowl) and refrigerate for at least 6 hours and up to 2 days. (This allows the oats to hydrate.)
Step 3Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a metal 9-inch square baking pan with butter and line it with parchment paper, leaving about 2 inches to hang over 2 sides of the pan and use as handles later. Grease the parchment paper as well.
Step 4Scrape dough into the prepared baking pan. Lightly grease a large spatula and firmly press the mixture into the pan in an even layer. Bake until the surface is light golden brown and firm, 25 to 30 minutes.
Step 5Transfer to a rack and allow bars to cool completely in the pan. Once cooled, use a butter knife or small offset spatula to cut along the inside edges of the pan and release the bars. Using the parchment paper overhang, lift bars out of the pan and place them on a cutting board. Cut into 18 bars. Store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days.