I love looking at recipe books. I love the potential of them. The goodness, the gooeyness, the savouring, imagining and the resulting communion of sharing good food.
When we downsized we had to donate quite a few cookbooks. I rather grandly declared we could find everything we wanted on the world of the wondrous web. Also, our apartment’s shelf space was minimal. There was that.
I was mostly right about the web. I keep most of my best recipe ‘clippings’ on Pinterest, which is ever so handy. But there is still something so tactile and homey about well-used pages with drips and stains and stuck-together pages. Those well-worn recipes make me smile.
As well, some books demanded to be kept. Like the Mennonite cookbook my mother gave me with her hopeful inscription that I would remember it was up to me to feed my new husband. Mom hadn’t quite fully signed on to the feminist manifesto before she died (though I liked that she used the words ‘far out’ in her hip enticement to get me to be a good wife. I swear I cannot recall her ever ever ever saying those words in real life).
All this to say; a cook book has to be pretty stellar for it to pass the test and enter our world. Last month I decided Angela Liddon’s vegan cookbook, ‘oh she glows‘ made that cut.
First off, a disclaimer. I’m not a vegan. I’m not even a vegetarian. But I want to incorporate more and more plant-based recipes in my day-to-day life. I swear I feel healthier just looking at this book.
And now I have one more reason to crack the spine and whip up my first batch of ‘classic glo’ energy bars: we are heading up to Whistler this Wednesday for a couple of days of snowshoeing and spa-ing. I am on an arduous assignment from Expedia.ca.
They asked me to report on winter alternatives to skiing. Naturally I suggested a snowshoe picnic followed by a massage and maybe, after the next day’s snowshoe expedition, a few steam-and-cold-plunge sessions at Scandinave Spa.
I decided that with all that tromping around and frolicking in the snow, a girl’s gotta have some homemade energy bars.
I am happy to report these ‘classic glo bars’ were dead-easy to make and very tasty. I modified them slightly as Miz Liddon called for sunflower seeds and I happened to have pumpkin seeds on hand instead. Also her call for brown rice syrup sounded suspiciously like good ol’ corn syrup would work. It did. I only had an 8×8 pan instead of the 9×9 she suggested, so my bars are a little thicker around the middle, but then…so am I.
Also, when she talks about really pressing the mixture into the pan, I just threw another piece of parchment paper on top to keep my fingers from getting stuck to the top. Easy peasy.
As for non-dairy chocolate chips? With all due apologies. She must have been kidding. Seriously. No way. Pure chocolate. Every time. Thank you very much.
Here’s the Classic Glo Bar recipe. Feel virtuous and enjoy.