I love hiking. Stephen and I used to go all the time before we had kids. Before Mason was born I scored a brand new unused Kelty backpack for $10 at a garage sale. We used it until we moved to the valley, where hiking trails are not as convenient, and we had another baby. I ended up giving it away now wising I had kept it. Who knew I would become brave enough to take 3 little kids hiking.
Last weekend we took a drive up into a small community near the mountains and let the kids go free. They played for hours jumping of rocks, climbing trees and running free, something they do not get to do very often in a city. They were the happiness we have seen them. This week we threw our plans to wind, loaded up the picnic basket and headed to the lake. The last time we were there I vowed to make the Lake our weekend home until next fall. There was a hill across the lake we were interested in exploring. The most important thing to remember when hiking with kids is to have water and snacks on hand. The cranberry and apricot granola bars are filling and easy enough for little chefs to make.
Cascadian Farms makes an organic granola that is pretty good for $2.99 a box. Add a sprinkle of chopped nuts to the batter for an added crunch.
1 cup low-fat granola
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup finely chopped apricots and cranberries
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8×8 baking pan with foil, letting it extend over the edges; spritz it with vegetable oil.
In a large bowl, mix granola, oats, apricots and cranberries, and wheat flour. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, honey, oil and cinnamon. Stir into granola mixture, then pat batter in the pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until browned. When cool, use foil to lift from pan. Cut into bars. Store at room temperature for 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Makes 15.