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Food & Entertaining

Raising the Bar

Author: Susan Regan
Issue: August, 2009, Page 44
Photography by David B. Moore
IN A BLIND TASTE TEST, THE PHOENIX HOME & GARDEN STAFF TRIED SIX APPLE-FLAVORED HEALTH BARS. HERE ARE THE FINDINGS:


1.) LÄRABAR APPLE PIE
Panelists enjoyed the ample amount of nuts and hint of cinnamon in this bar but found the apple flavor too subtle.

2.) THINKFRUIT APPLE NONI NOURISH
Chunks of dried apple and nuts in this offering gave it a natural, homemade quality, observed tasters. They also liked the soft, chewy texture.

3.) CLIF BAR CRANBERRY APPLE CHERRY - VOTED BEST!
Several people likened the look of this bar, with its bits of oats and dried fruit, to an oatmeal cookie. Soy rice crisps lent an element of crunch that tasters preferred. 

4.) ORGANIC FIBER BAR AWESOME APPLE
Most found this bar’s dark, processed look, dry consistency and lack of apple flavoring to be turnoffs.

5.) HONEST FOODS APPLE GINGER
While this bar received high marks for its chunks of dried apple, nuts and oats, some thought its cinnamon flavor overpowered the apple.

6.) NATURE VALLEY APPLE CRISP
Granola and oats dominated this entry, which was the crunchiest of the bunch. Many felt it lacked an apple taste.


A WORD FROM CHEF ALLAN

Remember when having a “healthy” snack on the go meant grabbing a crunchy bar of overly sweetened oats? Recently, the market has ballooned into one that offers granola bars, energy bars, health bars and more. Phoenix Home & Garden Chef Allan notes that many of these are made with seeds, nuts and dried fruit, making them high in fiber as well as nutritious.

He adds that the right combination of these healthy ingredients can offer an energy boost that lasts longer than those of chocolate- and sugar-based bars. Chocolate-covered bars and those that include large amounts of honey will not hold up well in the desert heat, our chef adds.

One of the latest types of bars to appear on grocery store shelves is the raw bar. This snack often is made with oats, nuts and dried fruit. As the name implies, unlike many bars, this type is not baked. To see Chef Allan’s Raw Bar recipe, go to phgmag.com/food/recipe.










   




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