Thursday, 23 June 2011

Oh My GF Bars!?!

GF (Gluten Free) is a big topic these days, with everyone and their dog being diagnosed with the condition, or trying the diet just for fun. While I'm not in either camp, I know quite a few people whom are celiac - or at least sensitive enough to gluten to steer clear of it - and so when I saw a recipe that I could convert to be GF without sacrificing deliciousness, I couldn't resist making it, then trying it [insert moan here], and loving them. Count yourself lucky if you ever get to try these babies, because they are an instant favorite! Oh, and did I mention that these are "no bake, store in your freezer, good forever [okay, a few months - if you don't eat them that is!], ready for when you have surprise company, or a potluck", bars? Try them. Seriously. Oh, and they have coconut. Yeah, that was my idea.

Oh My GF! Bars
adapted from "Loves Veggies and Yoga"

For the bars:
1 c butter,  melted
1/3 c demerra [brown] sugar
2 c powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 c toasted shredded unsweetened coconut
1/2 c Nutella
2/3 c natural peanut butter
For the chocolate frosting:
1 1/2 c chocolate chips
1/4 c butter
1/4 c 1% milk
1/2 c powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1) Toast the coconut in the oven at 500F broil for roughly ten minutes. Stir every three to four minutes, and DON'T FORGET ABOUT IT! You'll smell the deliciousness when it's toasted perfectly! 
2) In a large microwave safe bowl, melt the butter.  Then add the brown sugar, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and stir by hand until combined (will look lumpy and strange).  Then add the toasted coconut and stir until combined.  Finally, add the Nutella and peanut butter and stir until combined.  
3) Press the mixture into a foil lined 9 x 13.  Place in freezer.
4) While the bars are cooling, make the chocolate frosting by melting the chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, taking care not to scorch them and checking every 15-30 seconds or so.  
5) After the chocolate chips are melted add in butter and milk and stir to incorporate.  Then add powdered sugar and vanilla extract and stir to incorporate.  If mixture becomes too thick to work with and the chocolate begins to set up, microwaving it again for 15 seconds will soften it.
6) When the frosting is ready, remove the bars from the freezer, frost them, and put bars back into the freezer to set up for a half hour before slicing them.
7) Store sliced bars in the freezer or fridge in an airtight container and take them out about 20 minutes prior to eating.  As they come up to room temperature, the flavor intensifies and they are more delicious and creamy but they will keep for weeks/months in the freezer as a make-ahead dessert.

Have you found any moan-worth recipes lately? Do your kids love them just as much? Darius thought this one was a DEFINITE keeper!

Oh, and here's a little picture for Grandma Juli to enjoy on her travels...

post bath Eli was playing with his toys happily. When my camera came out, he paused to pose -  what a sweetie!

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