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Long Haul Banana Apple Granola Bars

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Today, I made this bar especially for my dad, David.  He came into my life when I was 12 years old and for that I am very blessed.  My dad is a trucker and if any of you are truckers or know someone who is, it is a hard and grueling job.  A job that tends to keep them away from their families for extended periods of time, making it tough on all parties that are involved.  Not only do they spend countless days away from home, their work can be quite dangerous.

The long hours, the endless pavement that passes under their wheels can become hypnotizing, the sleepless nights can wear down their bodies, and the pure loneliness takes a real toll on them.  My dad is one of the hardest working men I know and he does it in the name of supporting his family.  I have always been so proud of my dad.  He has missed birthdays, holidays and family gatherings.  He never complains yet I know it weighs heavy on his heart.  In his life-long trucking career he has hauled everything from cows to cows milk…cars, fish, oil, gas, and in Alaska he was as an ice road trucker.   I always shutter at that.  Right now my dad is in the lower 48 hauling crude oil and as it stands he won’t be able to go home for Christmas.  So, in my own little way in bringing home to him, I am making all sorts of wonderful foods that will keep him going on the road.  One of his all time raw favorites is the Trail Mix bar that I make.

A few other amazing things that you ought to know about my dad is that he has a miracle green thumb and he is a gifted photographer.  Oh, and a musician!  OMGosh can he rock the house down with an electric guitar, or any instrument he touches.  Never took lessons, self-taught.  Pretty amazing man, don’t you think?  I am blessed.   So this recipe, is for all you truckers on the road… for all you wonderful fathers who touch their children’s lives!  I love you dad.

 

 

 

 

Ingredients: yields: 20 bars

Dry Ingredients:

Wet Ingredients:

  • 4 oz dried bananas, rehydrated in 1 cup hot water
  • 1 medium apple, cored and rough chopped
  • 6 large Medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup of banana soak water

Hand mix:

Preparation:

  1. Take the 4 oz of dried bananas and rehydrate them with hot water.  Allow them to soak while you prepare the next few steps.
  2. In a food processor fitted with the “S” blade, combine the pecans and walnuts.  Process until the nuts break down to small pieces. Add the oats, apple spice, cinnamon and salt.  Pulse together.
  3. Remove the bananas from the soak water, placing them straight into the food processor.  Don’t worry about shaking off all the water, the moisture from them will be needed.  Add 1/2 cup of the banana soak water and the dates to the machine and process until everything is mixed together well.  It will be sticky.  Transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Add 1 cup oats, the banana bits (diced dried banana) and raisins.  I recommend at this point to remove any jewelry from your hands and dive in!  Mix, squeeze and squish the dough together.
  5. Place the batter on the teflex sheet that comes with your dehydrator.  I made mine about 3/4″ thick and shaped it into a square.  Score the batter into desired sizes.  I made 20 squares.  Remove each bar from the teflex sheet and pat the bar together, cleaning up the edges and place it on the mesh sheet that comes with the dehydrator.
  6. Dry at 145 degrees for 1 hour, then reduce to 115 degrees for 6-8 hours or until desired dryness is achieved.
  7. Wrap each bar individually if you plan on using these for grab-and-go snacks. Or arrange them on plate for your friends and family to enjoy.  Store in the fridge to extend the shelf life.

Make your own apple spice seasoning:

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp ground allspice
  • 2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Combine all ingredients and blend well.
  2. Store in a small, airtight container.
The green thumb at work!

TThere are warm memories behind this mushroom photo.  Thank you for that dad.

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14 thoughts on “Long Haul Banana Apple Granola Bars

  1. Marita says:

    Hello,
    what a wonderful recipe thanks for sharing. My Hubby is a long distance truckie here in Australia. He carts exposives to the Iron Ore mines. Previously he was a shearer and is the hardest worker i know. Much respect goes to these sort of men , your dad , my husband, because they forego the pleasures in life for themselves to provide it for their family.
    I will be having a go at making these bars for him.
    Thank you for your posts
    Much love Marita
    WA Australia.

    • amie-sue says:

      Good day Marita,

      Thank you for sharing your story with me. Very touching. I hope you make the bars for him… we could start something here. hehe Many blessings to you and you husband… may the angels surround him. amie sue

  2. Abby says:

    Sweet dedication to your father…I am a Daddy’s girl too…my father turned 80 last year and I blessed to still have him in my life…he’s patient, kind, supportive and he has my face:)

    • amie-sue says:

      That is so sweet Abby, I really loved hearing this. :) We are both blessed, aren’t we?! Have a wonderful evening, amie sue

  3. Jennifer says:

    When I click the Print this Recipe the result leaves out all the dry ingredients. :(

    • amie-sue says:

      Oh wow, now that is weird Jennifer. I get the same thing as you do. I checked a few other recipes and some do it and some don’t. This will take me a bit to figure out. I might have to pull out the “big guns” to help me. I will keep you posted. Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention! amie sue

  4. Shakti says:

    Amie-sue that is the loveliest ode to a dad…awesome!
    I love your recipes your dedication to your craft and joy….the recipes are beautiful and your photos awesome….
    With the bananas from a raw prep point of view why do you re hydrate bananas instead of just using fresh?
    Ie. can I replace with fresh in recipe
    Thankyoi so much….
    Blessings

    • amie-sue says:

      Thank you Shakti :) It’s important that never miss a chance to show and tell those that we love just what they mean to us.

      Why do I use rehydrated bananas? I don’t for all recipes it just depends on a few things. Number one ~ what I have on hand the moment creativity strikes me. Part of my creative approach to my recipes is not having to run to store every time I make something, but to use what I have on hand (that is how I personally challenge myself).

      For as much time that I spend in the kitchen, I would end up living at my grocery stores and trust me, I spend enough time there as is. haha Secondly, it depends on the texture that I want. Fresh bananas do not offer the same consistency/texture as dried ones do. And often times dehydrated bananas (fruits) are stronger in flavor because they are dehydrated you are using a more concentrated amount than a fresh one. Does that make sense?

      So if a recipe used a dried fruit and you want to use fresh, you are going to have to play around to make sure you get the right consistency and flavor. So start with a lessor amount and add. One other thing… dehydrated fruits are sweeter than fresh so you may need to adjust the sweetener measurement.

      Good luck and have a blessed day. amie sue

  5. Lyn L. (mom of many) :] says:

    Hi Amie Sue,
    Wow, You have me going the gambit of emotions :] I got on to find a bar recipe that I could make and send with Gene for over the road ( he does long haul too) !! So the “Long Haul” caught my attention right away. Now you returned the favor, :] you had me crying with your sweet tribute to your dad. I had to call Gene and read him your post (He was deeply touched too). He asked that I type you a thank you from him also, for your very honoring post. :] Lyn

    • amie-sue says:

      Good evening Lyn and Gene,

      Well fiddle sticks… your comment brought tears to my eyes. :) We are just a bunch of peas in a pod. hehe I have always been so proud of my dad and I know the heartache that it brings when he has to be away from the family so much. I have many more recipes all ready to share that are part of the “Long Haul” series. I send a shipment as often as I can do my dad. Many blessings to your whole family. hugs!

  6. RenB says:

    In searching for ideas for my weekend dive into food preparation so that I don’t starve next week, I found this. What a wonderful tribute to your father. My Dad loves apples and bananas and oats! I can’t wait to share this with him in his Christmas treat package! Thanks again for sharing your recipes and yourself with so many of us. Renay

    • amie-sue says:

      You are so welcome Renay. I am making up a bunch of Long Haul bars for my dad again this year for Christmas. He likes to share them with other truckers so I always make an abundance. Please they freeze well. I have a few more Long Haul Bars to share recipe wise, so keep your eye out for them. Have a great day! amie sue

  7. Kay Horn says:

    Dear Amie-Sue

    Could you please clarify re: the ingredients list.
    You list 2 cups of oats in the dry ingredients but don’t mention them in the method.

    Thanks very much

    • amie-sue says:

      I do share when to add them Kay, #2 under preparation… “In a food processor fitted with the “S” blade, combine the pecans and walnuts. Process until the nuts break down to small pieces. Add the oats, apple spice, cinnamon and salt. Pulse together. Things can be easy to over look from time to time. :) Have a great day, amie sue

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