Toasted barley fruit and nut bars

Time 50 minutes
Yields Makes 20 bars
Toasted barley fruit and nut bars
(Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times)

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. On a large, rimmed baking sheet, combine the barley, almonds, coconut and pecans and toast until the mixture is fragrant and just beginning to color, about 6 minutes. Cool the barley mixture slightly and reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.


Brush a 9- by 9-inch baking pan with coconut oil and line with parchment paper, allowing the parchment to extend up two sides of the pan. Brush the parchment with coconut oil.


Brush a large bowl generously with coconut oil. Combine the barley mixture with the dates, raisins and chia seeds in the prepared bowl. Bring the remaining 1/3 cup coconut oil, barley malt syrup, honey and salt to a boil in a heavy, deep saucepan over medium heat. Boil until the syrup darkens slightly, about 3 minutes. Immediately pour the boiling syrup over the barley mixture in the bowl, and stir until the barley mixture is evenly coated with syrup. Transfer the mixture to the pan, pressing the mixture to evenly spread and smooth out the top. Bake for 10 minutes, then rotate the pan and continue to bake until the sides just begin to color, an additional 10 minutes or so.


Cool the bars in pan, then use the parchment sides to remove the bars. Cut into 20 pieces. The bars will keep, covered and stored in an airtight container, up to 4 days.

Recipe from Jeanne Kelley.

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