Apricot Sunshine Bars

1 cup orange juice
1 cup dried apricots, loosely packed
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup oil
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins, cut up
2/3 cup almond meal (finely ground almonds)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9X9 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a small saucepan heat orange juice to a boil. Put dried apricots in pan. Bring to a boil again and turn off heat. Cover pan and let apricots absorb juice for 5 - 10 minutes or until tender enough to cut with a sharp knife, but not really soft.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium-sized mixing bowl cream together honey and oil.
  4. In a large mixing bowl stir together oats, flour, wheat germ, cinnamon, and salt.
  5. Drain apricots and add the juice to the honey-oil mixture.
  6. Chop apricots coarsely and stir into dry ingredients along with raisins and almond meal.
  7. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well. Press dough into the baking dish. Bake for about 25 minutes. Keep an eye on it as cookies made with honey brown quickly. Allow to cool completely before cutting.

Makes about 3 dozen 1 1/2 inch bars

1997 Sandi Dobrowolsky

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