It takes less time to do thing right than it does to explain why you did it wrong.

Snack bars made for packing

bars

People told me that babies came with a lot of stuff. This week we went on our first over-night trip with Remy. It wasn’t until my husband and I were re-packing the car for the second time (after repacking and consolidating all the bags and baskets that were meant to go in the car) that I really realized how many things a baby needs. It’s been years since I’ve needed anything more than a tiny overnight bag.  Now, I need bags and bags for this tiny person.

Luckily, I managed to find room for a batch of my own fruit and nut bars. Thanks to my law school friend Whitney, who first pointed me to this idea on shutterbean. I’ve had a lot of fun making these in the last couple of weeks, and so far the combinations have been fabulous. They only take three minutes to make (seriously!) with a small food processor. Here’s the basic idea:

Mel’s mostly natural and delicious snack bars

(makes about 8)

In a food processor, combine:

1 cup your favorite nuts: almonds, peanuts, cashews, macadamia

1/4 – 1/2 cup your favorite dried fruit: apricots, cherries, cranberries, raisins

¼ cup old fashioned style oatmeal

Some spices: salt plus cinnamon, coriander, nutmeg (about ¼ teaspoon)

1/4 – 1/3 cup something sweet and sticky: real maple syrup, honey, agave

Press into a parchment-lined pan. I use one that’s about 9×7. Make another batch and stack in layers if you are feeling adventurous. Pop in the freezer for a bit (a few hours maybe, just to help things stick together). Turn over and cut into bars. Set on wax paper or parchment squares to make eating easier later. Or enjoy right away.

So far the combinations I have tired and loved are:

-Peanuts with apricots, cinnamon, and maple syrup (tasted like an oatmeal cookie! But too sweet for my husband)

-Peanuts with cranberries, coriander, and maple syrup

-Almonds with cherry, cinnamon, nutmeg, and maple syrup

-Cashews with apricots, coriander, and honey

Let me know what you try and how it works out!