apple pecan bars

We are beginning to accumulate apples more than we are eating out of hand, so I made up a batch of these vegan, wheat-free bars yesterday and sent half of them with my son to his daycare, where they were enjoyed by a handful of toddlers. I skipped the streusel topping to lessen the sugar and still found them plenty sweet.

This used up two apples but if you’re looking to use more, you could make a small batch of applesauce to fill the recipe’s one cup requirement.

I didn’t have oat flour or rice flour on hand but made my own by grinding oats, then brown rice, in my Magic Bullet until finely ground. Presto.

This recipe comes from the Rebar Modern Food Cookbook, one of my very faves.

Apple Pecan Bars

1/4 cup vegan margarine (use butter if you’re not worried about the bars being vegan)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup “flax eggs” (recipe follows)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup oat flour
1/2 cup rice flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 apples, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup chopped pecans (didn’t have any, so used walnuts)

Streusel topping:

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 vegan margarine
3 tbsp oat flour
3/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil a 9×9 baking pan. Cream together the margarine and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in the “flax eggs.” Mix in the vanilla and applesauce and set aside.

2. In a separate bowl, mix together the flours, spices, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the dry mix to the wet mix and stir to combine. Fold in the apples and pecans and spread into the prepared pan.

3. Prepare streusel topping by combining the ingredients and forming a crumbly mixture with your fingertips. Sprinkle the topping over the entire surface and bake 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and cut into 12 bars. These keep well refrigerated for up to 4 days.

Flax Eggs
(yields about 1 cup)

1/4 cup flax seeds
3/4 cup + 2 tbsp water

Place the flax seeds in the bowl of a food processor and grind them thoroughly. With the motor running, slowly add the water. Once all of the water has been added, let the processor run for 5 minutes. Measure and use as required. Store extra flax eggs in the fridge for up to 5 days.

apple bars

– Dinah Murdoch lives, eats and writes in Kitchener.