Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Whole Grain Wednesdays-Sunshine Snack Bars

We have been battling rabbits in our backyard garden this year!  Sadly, the rabbits ate our lettuce and carrot tops down to little nubs.  We tried some odor repellents, and spraying the plants with pepper spray, but the rabbits were not deterred.  So, we finally just gave up and put chicken wire around the whole garden!

I am happy to say that the carrots have made a full recovery and they have bushy tops again.  I was looking for a snack bar recipe that called for carrots and found this one in Potpourri magazine.  These bars are full of yummy nutritious things!   Quick oats are a whole grain, they have just been cut to make them cook faster.

Sunshine Snack Bars
2 cups shredded carrot
1/4 cup dried chopped apricots
1/2 cup golden raisins*
2 cups quick cooking oats
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
12 ounces apple juice concentrate (thawed)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine the carrot, apricots, raisins, oats, and cinnamon in a bowl.  Add the apple juice concentrate and stir well.  Press the ingredients into a greased 9 x 11-inch glass baking dish.  Bake for about 40 minutes or until the bars are brown.  Cool completely before slicing.

Crediting information:  Makes 18 servings.  Each serving creditable for 1 bread/bread alternate at any meal or snack for 3-5 year old children.

*can be a choking hazard for children under the age of 4 years.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Whole Grain Wednesdays- Whole Wheat Hamburger or Hot Dog Buns

Whole wheat hamburger buns are pretty common in grocery stores now.  But a few years ago, it was really hard to find them, so I thought I would try making my own.  Even though they can be found pretty easily at most any store now, they are still much more expensive than the white variety.  So, whenever I have the time, I like to make my own.  You just can't beat the taste of freshly made buns!

This recipe is for the bread machine (it makes a 1 1/2 pound loaf).   I use my bread machine at least once a week because I like the fact I can just throw everything in and come back later to dough that is ready to bake with, or even freshly cooked bread.   I have two special "bun" pans that I got from King Arthur's Flour to make hamburger buns in, but you can just make bun shapes and bake them on a cookie sheet which works great too! 

Whole Wheat Hamburger/Hot Dog Buns
1 cup water
1 large egg
1 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 Tablespoons canola oil
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups bread flour
1/4 cup nonfat dry milk
2 Tablespoons instant potato flakes
1 Tablespoon wheat gluten
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons bread machine yeast

1 egg yolk, beaten with a splash of water
Sesame seeds for sprinkling (optional)

Place all of the ingredients in the bread pan according to the order of the bread machine manufacturer's instructions (this can vary depending on what brand of bread machine you have).  Program the machine for the dough cycle and start the machine.

When the machine beeps at the end of the dough cycle, dump the dough out onto a lightly floured surface.  Divide the dough into about 8-10 equal portions depending on how big you like your buns.  For the hamburger buns, form each portion into a tight round.  For hot dog buns, roll each portion into approx. 6 inch cylinder.  Place portions in a greased bun pan, or place on a greased baking sheet.  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes.

Remove the plastic wrap and brush rolls with egg mixture. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. 

Bake for about 15-20 minutes, depending on the size of the roll, or until lightly browned.  Remove the buns from the baking sheet and place them on a rack to cool completely.

Enjoy :)

Crediting information:  Makes 48 servings.  Each serving creditable for 1 bread/bread alternate at any meal or snack for 3-5 year old children.