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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Chocolate Lovers No Time To Bake Snack - Granola Fudge Clusters



 Granola is such a convenient and healthy food, and not just for breakfast. Day trips, hiking, boating or camping, all need lightweight, portable foods to carry along. Granola is the perfect trail mix type snacking liked by kids and adults alike.

Then there is the pondering of how to add appeal to the lunchbox. Granola can be packed as is or made into a nutritious, kid satisfying sweet treat.

Most mother's go through the frustration of their child telling them at the last, usually least convenient, minute that they need something for bake sale.

A Granola Fudge Cluster is the perfect, no stress solution, and contains only three to four ingredients.

You will need granola (either store bought or homemade), butterscotch chips, semisweet chocolate chips and walnuts (optional depending on what is already in your granola).

Keep these items on hand and you'll have your child's snack ready to go within 30 minutes.

HOMEMADE GRANOLA

6 cups rolled oats
2 cups shredded coconut (up to you whether to use sweetened or unsweetened)
1 cup wheat germ (I use raw but can use toasted)
1 cup chopped nuts (slivered almonds, chopped pecans, chopped walnuts, its up to you)
1 cup hulled sunflower seeds (I use raw)
1 cup sesame seeds (I use hulled)

Combine the above ingredients in a large bowl

1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup honey
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Combine the above three ingredients in a saucepan, heat and stir until blended, no need to get hot enough to boil.

Stir wet ingredients into dry until well coated. Spread onto two greased cookie sheets. Bake in a 250 degree oven for about 30 minutes, stirring half way through. Granola hardens and gets crisper as it cools so don't overbake. Cool completely before storing in an airtight container. The ratio of dry to wet for this recipe is 8 to 1.

GRANOLA FUDGE CLUSTERS

1 cup or 6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup or 6 oz. butterscotch chips
2 - 3 cups granola (2 if adding the additional nuts, 3 if have nuts already in granola)
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips and butterscotch chips. Depending on microwave wattage melt on high for 1 minute, stir, then another minute and stir. When smooth, stir in the granola and walnuts if using.
Drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper-lined baking sheets.
Refrigerate for 15 minutes or until firm.
Store at room temperature in covered container.
Yields about 2 dozed depending on size of each cluster.