Crunchy Granola Bars
Note: I hate to even say it, but I liked the way these came out even better than Alton's! Sorry, Mr. Brown. I left mine out in the open for a few days, though, and you could probably chip a tooth with them. But they are still fabulous. Don't forget to put them in an air-tight container!
2 cups oats ("old fashioned" is best, but anything you have around will work)
3/4 cup wheat germ
3/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup nuts, in small pieces
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
4 Tbsp butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
1 cup dried fruit
1) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2) Mix oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, and nuts on a cookie sheet (one with sides). Toast them in the oven for 15 minutes, stirring every 3 minutes.
3) Line a 13x11 casserole dish with Reynolds Release foil. This stuff is amazing. You will be so happy.
4) Bring brown sugar, honey, butter, vanilla, and salt to a simmer in a saucepan large enough to hold the oats mixture. Stir constantly.
5) When oat mixture is finished toasting and liquid mixture is fully incorporated, mix together very thoroughly.
6) Put the mixture into the foil-lined casserole dish, and spread it evenly in the pan. Place another piece of release foil on top of the granola. Pressing hard, compact the granola until there is no "give" anymore. You might need to use pot holders because the mixture will still be hot.
7) Let stand for 2-3 hours or until granola is completely cooled.
8) Turn the granola onto a large cutting board, peeling away the release foil. Cut as desired and store in a air-tight container.