Black Forest Almond Granola Bars

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Main Ingredient: Nuts
Cuisine Type: American
Serves: 20 bars

These homemade granola bars are chock-full of good-for-you ingredients like rolled oats, flax seed, almonds and dried cherries. Wrap in plastic and position them as a portable snack for customers to buy on the run. Or market them as a healthier but sophisticated coffee break option.

Ingredients

8.5 g whole, natural roasted almonds
6 oz. thick rolled oats, toasted
8 g fennel seed, toasted and ground
8 g chia seed, toasted and ground
35 g flax seed, toasted
4 oz. dried cherries
7 oz. brown rice syrup
1.5 g  kosher salt
4 oz. roasted almond butter
3.5 oz. dark chocolate, melted and tempered
5 g fleur de sel flakes

Steps

1. In med. bowl, combine almonds, oats, fennel seed, chia seed, flax seed and dried cherries; reserve.

2. In med. heavy-bottomed saucepan over med.-high heat, bring brown rice syrup to a boil. Brush sides of pan with water to prevent crystallization of syrup. Cook syrup to 235° to 240°F.

3.Once proper temperature has been reached, add almond butter. Stir over low heat until melted.

4. Stir in reserved almond mixture until the syrup has coated the dry mixture.

5. Turn mixture out onto a parchment-lined quarter sheet tray that has been brushed with oil. Evenly spread with your hands, which have been gloved and dipped in water to prevent sticking. Cool immediately.

6. When mixture is completely cool, cut into 1¼- by 4 ¼-in. bars. Dip bottoms of bars in melted chocolate.

7. Transfer bars to a parchment-lined half sheet tray that has been lightly sprinkled with fleur de sel. Cool in refrigerator. Store in an airtight container under refrigeration until ready to use.

Recipe by Chef John Csukor, KOR Food Innovation, Ashland, Va. Recipe by courtesy of Almond Board of California