Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Blog Party #44--Brunch: Aloha Sunrise Power Bars and Juice Shots

It's Blog Party time again, time to come up with an appetizer and drink that represent the monthly theme. This month, our terrific hostess Stephanie from Dispensing Happiness is revisiting one of her favorite themes: "Brunch: Worth Getting Up Late For...Again".

Although visions of mini-Eggs Benedict or corn-beef hash were floating through my head, I decided to go with a healthier option and make some Hawaii-inspired "power bars". These are similar to the Sunshine Power Bars I made a few months ago, but I made some changes in ingredients to make them even better and more tropical. To go with them I plugged in my juicer to make some delicious, healthy juice shots mixing fresh papaya, carrot and pineapple. Together they are better for you than "eggs benny" and the perfect start to a morning, or for a long night of Blog Partying.

Aloha Sunrise Power Bars

4 cups crisped brown rice cereal
1/2 cup coconut flakes or chips (I used a large coconut "chip")
1/3 cup almond slivers
1/3 cup macadamia nuts, chopped
1/3 cup dried papaya, diced
1/3 cup dried mango
1/3 cup dried pineapple
1/4 cup chopped crystallized ginger
2 Tbsp ground flax seeds
2 Tbsp wheat germ
2 tsp ground cinnamon 
1 1/2 tsp Hawaiian Red Alaea salt
1  1/2 cup brown rice syrup
1/2 cup almond butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread coconut in a single layer on a pie plate and almonds and mac nuts in a single layer on another plate. Toast, stirring as needed, until coconut and nuts become golden brown, (About 6-7 minutes for the larger coconut chips and 8-9 minutes for nuts). Spray a 9"x13" pan with cooking spray. Pour crisped rice cereal into a large mixing bowl and add coconut, nuts, chopped dried fruit, and ginger and mix together. Add flax seeds, wheat germ and Hawaiian red salt and toss to mix well.

Combine cinnamon, brown rice syrup and almond butter in a small saucepan, over medium heat and stir constantly until smooth and bubbling. (about 4 minutes).

Pour syrup mixture into cereal mixture and stir carefully to ensure it is combined and the syrup covers all of the cereal mixture. Scoop sticky cereal mixture into pan, spray hands with cooking spray (so mixture doesn't stick to them) and carefully and thoroughly pat mixture evenly into pan, pressing down lightly but firmly so everything sticks together.

Allow to cool and set about 1 hour then cut into bars, whatever size you desire. Wrap bars individually in wax paper. 

Notes/Results: Delicious! Chewy and flavorful, these bars are the perfect breakfast or snack. I used a crisped brown rice cereal this time for added crunch. I was able to find low-sugar dried papaya, pineapple and mango in the bulk foods section of my natural foods store, which is nice as it cuts a bit of the sugar. With the fruit, mac nuts, and some dried ginger, they have a definite tropical vibe. I added some slivered almonds, ground flax seeds and wheat germ for extra nutrients. For the bit of salty, I crave in a power bar, I added a bit of Hawaiian Red Alaea Salt, and can I say yum!?!  With every bite you get some sweet fruit, a bit of spicy ginger, the toasted taste of the coconut and nuts and that bit of salt; all in a crisp, chewy base. Of course there is a fair amount of sugar in these bars but it's from primarily natural sources and there are lots of vitamins and minerals in them too. (A bonus--they are gluten-free). Wrapping the bars individually in wax paper and putting them in an airtight container, keeps them fresh and ready to grab on the go.

Papaya-Carrot-Orange Juice Shots
No recipe here, I just drag out my juicer and throw a little of each ingredient in. Mix them together and pour into shot glasses. Papaya, carrot and orange is one of my favorite combinations; tangy and refreshing but a bit sweet too. You get some vitamin C, beta-carotene and enzymes that aid in your digestion from this blend, so you better have a few shots!

Thanks to Stephanie for another great Blog Party gathering. If you want to join in the fun you have until Friday to RSVP. The round up with everyones' brunch tidbits will be posted at Dispensing Happiness, after the weekend.


  1. These bars look so good - I've never tried crisp brown rice before, does it taste like rice krispies?

  2. I really want to make my own granola or power bars one day - so much better than store bought!
    And I am so craving one of your juice shots! Sounds amazing.

  3. Kat--thanks! They are pretty tasty.

    Sara--Yes, it is basically a brown rice crispy in taste and texture. I try to buy unsweetened or fruit juice sweetened.

    Natashya--you should do it--it's easy and a good breakfast item. ;-)

  4. I bet every bite is different, they have so many goodies in them. I love fresh juice-nothing you can buy even comes close. A yummy mix for the fruit!

  5. These sound fantastic! Perfect for me to take to school for a mid morning snack. I'm at school by 6:30 so by about 9:30, I really need something.


Mahalo for visiting and for leaving a comment. I love reading them and they mean a lot!

All advertising, spam, inappropriate (or just plain rude) comments will be promptly deleted. I do appreciate your right to free speech and to your opinion but I'm not into mean, rude, or mean snarky (non-mean snarky is just fine!) ;-)