Banana Nut Bars

It's Saturday afternoon. You're in your PJs. Your boyfriend is still addicted to Mass Effect.

Just me? Ok. 

If this situation occurs - and it does more than I care to admit - the best thing to make is something banana related. 

I usually take this opportunity to make my favourite banana bread, totally delicious warm with butter spread on.  Bananas = 1 of my 5 a day so a bit of butter's ok. Whilst perusing Sainsbury's magazine I came across a recipe for banana nut bars. Out of 8 ingredients I only had 3 but I would not let that stop me from making the bars mine!

Despite only having ripe bananas, eggs and ground almonds I rummaged through the cupboards to find replacements for the missing hazelnuts, pecans, desiccated coconut, raisins and dried cranberries. Usually, upon find a shocking lack of ingredients, I just wouldn't bother but I decided to experiment. 

I found a little Graze packet lying around - 'chocolate pudding' featuring little milk chocolate drops and raisins - and threw in two handfuls of jumbo oats and a handful of granola with almonds and raisins on. 

By the way, oats rule! I'd put them in everything if I could. I love oats.

These bars are pretty healthy. There's no butter, sugar or flour so it was nice to bake something that wouldn't totally destroy my gym session. Plus, they were really quick to throw together.

Banana Nut Bars
Makes 10

2 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
3 large eggs (I actually used 4 medium and it came out fine)
100g ground almonds
2 handfuls of jumbo oats
1 handful of crunchy granola
small handful of raisins 
milk chocolate drops (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius, 160 for fan ovens or gas mark 4. Line a square tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. Mash the bananas and mix in the eggs, ground almonds, oats and other ingredients.
  3. Pour into the lined tin and smooth flat. Bake for 25 minutes until firm and lightly golden. 
  4. Turn out, remove from the paper and cool on the rack. 
This was totally a makeshift bake as I had no greaseproof paper as well as the missing ingredients.

The result is a delicious baked bar, perfect for snacks or with tea. The banana is subtle and not over sweet and the ground almonds leave a nutty flavour. No flavour is too overpowering. I will definitely be making these again.