Nutritious Nut & Seed Bars
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 cup raw peanuts
- ½ cup raw macadamia nuts
- ½ cup raw hazelnuts
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ¼ cup buckwheat groats
- ¼ cup sesame seeds
- ½ cup raw honey
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- ¼ tsp good quality salt
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
- Place the almonds, peanuts, macadamia nuts and hazelnuts into a large baking dish, and spread evenly. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until they are golden brown and fragrant. Once toasted, transfer the nuts to a large mixing bowl and add the pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, buckwheat groats and sesame seeds, and mix well. Set aside.
- While the nuts are roasting, grease and line a 30x20cm baking pan with baking paper, then lightly brush the top of the baking paper with some oil. Lightly brush a second sheet of baking paper approximately the same size as your pan, and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, combine the honey, maple syrup and salt and bring to a boil. If you have a candy thermometer, continue boiling until the syrup reaches 120-130 degrees (which is considered 'hard ball stage'). If you don't have a candy thermometer, boil for 3 minutes, and then intermittently check the consistency of the syrup by dropping a small amount into a glass of water and then squeezing it together with your fingers.
- Once it reaches a firm consistency, take the syrup off the stove. Stir in the vanilla extract and immediately pour the hot syrup over the nuts and seeds and quickly mix together until everything is evenly coated and distributed.
- Promptly transfer the nut and syrup mixture to your prepared pan and spread evenly with a spatula or wooden spoon. Then cover with the greased sheet of baking paper (greased side down). Use a flat object to press the mixture firmly down, compacting it (a flat bottomed jar or glass works well).
- Let the bars cool at room temperature for about 20 minutes. While they're still slightly warm and pliable, carefully hold the sides of the baking paper and lift them out of the pan, then cut them to your desired size.
- Once the bars have totally cooled, store them in an airtight container with baking paper between each row of bars to avoid them sticking together.
TIP: If you like your bars chewy, store them at room temperature, and if you prefer them more brittle, store them in the fridge. Either way, they'll keep for approximately 1 month.