I love people that have a sense of humor.  These people can usually make others laugh, and more importantly can laugh at themselves.  The kind of person who doesn’t hold back their chuckle, but instead lets that unmistakably genuine and jolly laugh out without a care.  I also love people who enjoy FOOD.  Being that I have a food blog, obviously I can appreciate a person who has a hunger for delicious things, and isn’t afraid to help themselves.

Now, one of my professors definitely fits the criteria for an awesome sense of humor.  He often tells us funny stories in class and his smile is very kind and genuine.  As far as loving food is concerned, I am not really sure on that.  However, he ALWAYS has one of those peanut butter granola bars, and is crunching away on it before classes gets rolling.  My mom used to buy them.  They are the Trail Mix brand I believe, and they come with two in a wrapper.  They are crunchy and a bit hard, and it doesn’t matter how clean of an eater you are, these make a mess.  Crumbs everywhere.

Anyways, I don’t know my professors opinion on certain foods, but I know he likes those granola bars.  Recently he wrote me a very nice letter of recommendation for several internships I applied for.  He’s also been going through some family hardships, including the passing of a parent, which I cannot even begin to imagine how tough that is.  I have demanded my parents to outlive me. 

I wanted to make this professor something to say thanks, especially considering he wrote my letters while having a lot of other personal things going on.  So I made him some granola bars.

There are several recipes and dozens of variations for granola bars.  I was in the kitchen making these last night, with no recipe in mind, just my teacher and peanut butter.  So here we go.  My version of granola bars.

 Chewy Peanut Butter Granola Bars with Coconut and White Chocolate:

2-1/2 cups oats

1-1/2 cups coconut

1 cup crunch peanut butter

1/2 cup honey

1/2 cup dark brown sugar

2 tbs butter

1 tsp vanilla

2-1/2 cups white chocolate chips

generous pinch of salt

Combine the coconut and oats in a bowl then set aside.  In a sauce pan over medium low heat, combine butter, peanut butter, honey, brown sugar and salt, stirring until melted and combined.  Remove from heat and add the vanilla.  Pour mixture over the oats and coconut, stirring to combine everything well.  Next fold in 1 cup of the white chocolate chips.  

Pour mixture into a greased 9×13 baking dish lined with parchment paper for easy removal.  Press mixture down into the dish then bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until the edges start to brown.  Let cool at room temperature.

Lift the cooled mixture out of the baking dish and cut into bar sized pieces.  Now you can stop here and eat them…or

you can take the other 1-1/2 cups of white chocolate chips and melt to drizzle over the bars.  Place the bars in the fridge and let the chocolate harden for about 5 minutes.

Thank you Dr. O.