Oatmeal, cream cheese and cherries fill these delicious bars.
OATMEAL WALNUT AND BANANA BARS
Heat oven to 350F. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. In a large bowl, blend 2 bananas, mashed, with 1/2 cup cream cheese, softened. Stir in 2 cups rolled oats, 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1/3 cup dried cherries, chopped, 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey, 1/4 cup toasted wheat germ, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and 1/4 teaspoon salt until thoroughly combined. Spread into prepared pan and bake until firm and browned around the edges, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool, then cut into bars.
Recipe adapted from Oprah Magazine, September 2015
CHERRY OATMEAL BARS
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
2 (12-ounce) bags frozen cherries, thawed
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar, divided
1 cup flour
1 cup oats
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup butter, cut up
1 package cream cheese, softened
Heat oven to 350F. Line a 9-inch square pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides, spray with cooking spray. Mix cornstarch and water until blended. Bring cherries, lemon juice and 1/4 cup sugar to boil in medium saucepan on medium-high heat, stirring frequently, simmer on medium heat for 5 minutes or until cherries are softened, stirring occasionally. Add cornstarch mixture, cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat.
Mix flour, oats, brown sugar and baking soda in a large bowl. Rub in butter until mixture forms coarse crumbs, press half onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix cream cheese, eggs and remaining sugar until blended.
Pour cream cheese mixture over crust, top with cherry mixture and remaining crumb mixture.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely. Cut into bars.
Recipe adapted from Food and Family, Summer 2015