Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Lemon tree and 5/100.

I'd like to apologise in advance if this post makes no sense. My head feels like a balloon and it's floating about 2 feet out in front of me and a little bit to the left which is to say I have a head cold. Woe is me, right?

Our lemon tree is doing well, thanks for asking. We've now had it for three weeks and after getting some more potting soil for it and some citrus food we're hoping that its roots are growing and it has enough nutrition to keep producing its one lemon. I forget who asked when I talked about the lemon tree previously, but the lemon is now at full size and weight we're just waiting for it turn completely yellow before picking it! So here it is...Our Lemon Tree...

(I'm hoping it's kind of like pregnancy, you know the first couple of weeks you don't see a huge change but when you go back to look at it 3 months from now when we're going to say, Whoa our lemon tree is ginormous look at all that new growth!).

In other news, Inspector Climate and I have one conversation at least once a week which goes something like this:

him: you need to bring a snack what do you want?

Me: I won't need a snack I'll be fine.

Him: are you sure....

2 hours later...I'm crying on the corner some where unable to find gluten free food and have gone past hungry to the State of Irrationality. Lovely. When I have finally gotten food into my system, I realise that we need something stat that we can put into our bags that will be nutritious and delicious. So I started searching the internet for the gluten free granola bars, hoping I'd come across ones that were easy to make and oh so tasty. I just googled "gluten free granola bar" and Smitten Kitchen's recipe for thick, chewy granola bars popped up. So, I started looking for gluten free oats which I figured were going to be the hardest thing for me on the list of ingredients to find. Oh, how right I was - in fact anyone who I asked said "but oats have gluten in them..." And so, I adapted the recipe to this:

1 2/3 cups rolled quinoa flakes
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup Almond flour
1/2 teaspoon salt - I used salted butter, so I left the salt here out.
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 to 3 cups dried fruits and nuts (total of 10 to 15 ounces)*
1/3 cup peanut butter or another nut butter - I used crunchy peanut butter.
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons agave syrup (so in the original recipe it calls for corn syrup - but I didn't have any of that so I used agave instead! No harm done).
1 tablespoon water

* I used three cups and I divided it thusly: 1 cup sultanas, 1 cup chopped dried apricots, 1/2 cup sesame seeds and 1/2 cup shredded coconut. Other things that would taste amazing: any dried fruit, pepitas, sunflower seeds, almonds, walnuts, pecans, chocolate chips.

Step 1. Preheat oven to 155 degrees C fan forced. In a square pan put a layer of baking paper (depending on how thick you want the bars to be, vary the size of the pan). Then, mix all the dry ingredients together.

Step 2. Mix butter and honey and agave syrup together and vanilla. And while you're at it the peanut butter.

Step 3. Mix them all together and get something that looks like this:

Now, I think that we could have probably used 2 cups of quinoa flakes and 1/2 cup of almond flour as our final product was delicious but quite wet. Pour onto prepared baking pan and smoosh down until it is spread evenly and there is a fairly flat surface on the top. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until brown around the edges, just slightly brown on top but it still looks a little wet and doughy. Remove from oven and let cool in pan for EVER. I used the baking paper as a sling to get the bars onto a cooling rack and I think I removed them too early as they began to crumble immediately. Then I'd recommend placing them in the fridge for 20 minutes so they glue together a bit more and then cut into desired sized pieces:

Consume many and often. In fact, I am going to go have one right now.


  1. Your lemon tree is doing great! Sucks about the head cold, I hope you feel better soon.
    Great recipe as well! I get exactly like that when I'm hungry.

  2. Yumma yum yummy!! You know, I really envy you for being so crafty if the face of your problems with gluten. If I had a food allergy, I think that I'd probably starve- I'm too lazy to cook!! Also, you wouldn't go hungry in Asia... Rice noodles places are on every corner if that's your sort of thing lol.

  3. Your lemon tree has grown so much! It looks wonderful!
    Hope you feel better soon!

  4. That bar looks yummy! I'm impressed that suits your needs...most people would not! Um, maybe myself included. :(

    Sorry about your cold. I have the exact same thing! It just started yesterday, and it's from the neck up...so uncomfortable!!

  5. oh yum! great job on the granola bars! If I were able to find half those ingredients in the supermarket here in the Parisian 'burbs, I would definitely make a batch.

    Feel better soon. Head colds are the WORST. If your lemon was ready, you could have juiced him into a cup of hot tea with honey to treat your cold symptoms :)

  6. Ah, you have discovered the joy of Smitten Kitchen! Nice job with the substitution, these look yummy.

  7. Lemon tree.. very pretty. ;)

    Good that you were able to adapt the recipe. I hope it tastes as good as it looks.

  8. ALWAYS bring snacks. Always. I can have gluten, but I get a little silly when the blood sugar drops.

    Still loving the lemon.
    How I Miss Mine! :(
    Though I did go buy 2 blueberry bushes thanks to your little tree. ;)

  9. Awww..your lemon tree is so adorable:) I also love Smitten Kitchen and that recipe looks lovely. kisses and hugs

  10. I've reached that level of hunger before! Always take a snack. I think that lemon tree is gonna be a money maker one day!

  11. You should name your lemon tree.

    Have a contest....heeee

    Gluten free must be frustrating.

    The granola bars did look yummy

    that is all

  12. I'm so jealous of your citrus. : Looking at your picture makes me want to get back to a climate where fruit trees can be grown all year round! Thanks for making me smile.

  13. Ps: I’m hosting a cool Loop GIVEAWAY today! Hope you’ll join in:)
    Kisses and hugs, my dear

  14. I congratulate you: both for your lemon tree, and for your persistence in figuring out how to make a gluten free life sustaining snack!

    It must be extremely challenging, but you are persevering!!!

  15. The Many Colours of Happiness - I know right? The hungry monster isn't good.

    Oneika - I do enjoy rice noodles! Not so fond of meat though, which I hear there is a lot of in Asia as well.

    Cole - You think it's grown? really?

    Jo - It's bad isn't it? for the first time since Sunday, I can breathe through my nose!

    Crystal - You can't find rolled oats in the Parisian burbs? That's what I'd use if I could stomach them!

    Meg - I love Smitten Kitchen. Deb is Brilliant.

    Hilary - tastes FABULOUS. and it's moderately healthy. You know - sort of.

    Krysten - Aw, I love it too!

    le chef - I am sooo happy that our little lemon tree has inspired you to get blueberry bushes! That's so awesome!

    Diana - I know, she makes great stuff doesn't she!

    Crazy Shenanigans - I for some reason have not learned this lesson. Which is pathetic!

    PBJdreamer - It's not so bad. I've been considering naming the lemon tree. But I always end up just singing "LEMON TREE"

    Jessica - this if the first time I've ever lived anywhere where I would be able to have a lemon tree outside. It's a novelty for sure!

    Susan in the boonies - it's not so bad. Way easier than like five years ago - that's for sure!

  16. Just read your comment on my blog about the Lemon Tree and: Ta-Da! Here it is! Well done for keeping it alive an d looking great. I am horrible with plants.

  17. Why am I not making granola bars all the time? I need to make a huge batch and freeze them. And your lemon tree looks fantastic. Once it grows bigger you won't know what to do with all the lemons!

  18. This is a fantastic post. I am going to have to use this to but make it vegan.