Anzac bars

I was going to do a whole post tonight on our recent indulgent Highland getaway last week, but after 45 minutes of waiting for a slow computer and/or slow Blogger to upload photos, and to format photos prior to uploading, I settled on posting just a recipe tonight because I said I would.

As you will learn this week, Pat and I tried Anzac bars for the first time at the Mountain Cafe in Aviemore. I will go more in depth about the cafe in my next post, so cut a long story short, the chef at the cafe is originally from New Zealand, and she uses her Kiwi cafe culture influences in her baking and cooking, producing some phenomenal results. Among other items, the Anzac bar and cookie, both chock full of oats, coconut, dried fruit and pumpkin seeds.

In case you’re wondering, an Anzac bar is like an Australia or New Zealand version of a flapjack, loaded with oats, coconut, and golden syrup (that’s corn syrup for everyone in North America). Anzac stands for Australia New Zealand Army Corps, which existed during World War I. These bars, also made into cookies, were a staple to soldiers as they would keep for a long time. Unfortunately, around my husband and I, they don’t have much staying power.

We both got Anzac bars to take home with us, and downed them the next day. Oh. My. God. Doesn’t this look amazing??!!?!

The Mountain Cafe Anzac is sinful and a little overboard, especially with the chocolatey fudge top. I wanted to make my own version at home, omitting the almost inch thick chocolate top though, so I searched the internet for recipes. Every one I found was very basic, so I used this one for inspiration for my first attempt at Anzac Bars. All quantities are in UK cups.

Anzac Bars by the Canuck 
* influenced by Anzac Slice Recipe

1 1/3 cups plain flour 
1 1/3 cups rolled oats
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup dried coconut
1/4 cup dried cranberries 
1/4 pumpkin seeds 
175g butter
4 tbsp golden syrup
3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
3 tbsp boiling water


150g dark chocolate
2 tbsp dried coconut
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
2 tbsp dried cranberries 

2. Combine flour, oats, sugar, coconut, dried cranberries and pumking seeds in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre.

3. Place butter and syrup in a saucepan over low heat. Melt together, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes or until smooth. Combine bicarbonate of soda and boiling water in a jug. Remove butter mixture from heat. Stir in bicarbonate of soda mixture; this should produce a foamy recstion. Add to flour mixture. Stir to combine.

4. Transfer to prepared pan. Using the back of a fork, press mixture evenly into pan. Bake for 20 minutes or unil golden brown.

5. To make your topping, chop dried cranberries and pumkin seeds together. In a small bowl, mix with dried coconut and set aside.

6. Using a double boiler, melt you chocolate completely. Spread over top cooled bars, then sprinkle your topping mixture on top. Let chill until chocolate is firm but not solid. Slice into bars or squares.

Makes 24 square bars

The finished result

And the verdict? Delicious! I would love to make these with a thick chocolate fudge top, but then they wouldn’t be suitable for a small snack every day, would they? I posted this photo to Twitter and Facebook via Instagram last night, and one of my colleagues commented ‘Are you bringing this to work tomorrow? Or are you just teasing as usual?’ Just teasing as usual! But I did bake my colleagues some Blueberry Sourdough Muffins tonight.

Running tomorrow night, then writing about a lazy, indulgent few days in the Cairngorms. Now though? Bed time.


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