Sunday, January 23, 2011


Lately I’ve been obsessed with oats—oatmeal cookies, oatmeal for breakfast, oatmeal pancakes, muffins with oats—I just can’t get enough! I wanted to make a treat that would feature chewy, hearty oats as the star, rather than the backup player. I thought about blueberry oatmeal bars, but they just seemed too cakey. I thought about oatmeal cookies, but wanted something new. After searching through food blogs to find inspiration, I remembered something Amanda made awhile back—flapjacks!

Here in the US, the term is often used for pancakes, but in the UK, apparently flapjacks are delicious, chewy, oat-filled snacks, similar to our granola bars. Amanda made Molly’s version from Bon Appetit, which she said were tasty, but just crumbled apart, and were overly buttery for her liking (overly buttery!? No such thing…unless you’re 2 weeks away from wearing a swimsuit…).

Well, Amanda and I are two weeks away from wearing bikinis, so overly buttery is definitely feelin’ very real right now. I tweaked the recipe to my liking, reducing the amount of butter, subbing in honey and maple syrup for the British golden syrup, and adding coconut, almonds, flax seeds, and a sprinkle of cinnamon. They turned out good. Really good. In fact, I’m feeling extra grateful right now for reducing the butter, since I stood there and ate half the pan before they even cooled. They were a little crumbly, but I think that’s because I tried to remove them from the pan too soon, before they were properly cooled. I just couldn’t resist. Luckily, the squares did cool and stay together, and as far as the half cup or so that crumbled apart…that made a perfect sprinkle of granola on top of yogurt.

Chewy Coconut Flapjacks

1/3 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons honey
2.5 tablespoons pure maple syrup
Sprinkle of cinnamon
Pinch of salt
2 1/3 cups quick-cooking oats
½ cup shredded, sweetened coconut
¼ cup sliced almonds
1 tablespoon flax seeds

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 8-inch metal baking pan. Combine butter, brown sugar, honey, syrup, cinnamon, and salt in a heavy medium saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until melted, smooth, and combined. Remove from heat. Add oats, coconut, almonds, and flax seeds; stir until coated. Transfer mixture to pan and spread out in even layer, press down to flatten and mold together. Bake until top is golden and edges are lightly browned, 20- 25 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 5 minutes. Gently cut into squares. Cool completely in pan before serving.
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