My friend Jin moved to Chicago for college as a teenager. She never left, and we met at our current teaching assignment 8 or so years ago. We share a love of cooking and have explored new recipes in a variety of formats (cooking club, progressive dinners, sharing the farmer CSA) for some time now. Since she usually goes back to her home state for Christmas, she often stays in the city for Thanksgiving. Meghan and I fight to host her with our families, and I’ve won for the last 2 years.
Jin and I also share a love of wine, so she makes use of our guest room every Thanksgiving so we can consume as much as we want. Last year, she made a delightful biscuits and gravy for next day breakfast, but this year I came across a recipe for an unusual homemade granola bar.
- 1 c. rolled oats, toasted
- 1/2 c. crisp rice cereal
- 1/2 c. Parmesan, grated
- 1/2 c. freeze-dried vegetable bits
- 1/3 c. smoked almonds, chopped
- 3 tbsp. chia seeds
- 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika (swap in cumin, chili powder, or garlic powder for paprika)
- 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 2 large egg whites, beaten
- 1/2 c. unsweetened nut butter
- LIne 8-inch by 8-inch metal pan with foil; grease foil. Combine rolled oats, crisp rice cereal, Parmesan, freeze-dried vegetable bits, smoked almonds, chia seeds, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Stir in egg whites and unsweetened nut butter. Press firmly into pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. Cool completely on wire rack. Remove from pan; cut into 8 bars. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.