Kind Nut Bars.Vegan. Gluten-Free. Dairy-Free. Refined Sugar-Free.
It’s almost Diwali (Festival of Lights)!!! It’s that time of the year when every Indian household is overstocked with dried fruits and nuts to serve guests. It’s not like we don’t have them year around, but this time of the year we kind of go overboard. Dried fruits and nuts are awesome for an edible gift exchange because of their longevity. I am not exaggerating when I say that, during this time of the year there is so much dried fruit and nut exchanged that it lasted us enough for the whole year. It was very rare that my mom bought nuts from the store as we always had so much from Diwali. So what do you do with all these nuts??? I often wondered. It’s boring right to eat the same old nuts, right? So I was thinking of a good way to make use of nuts and thought, why don’t I try making some Chikki / Gajak / Brittle or Kind Nut Bars as they are popularly known here in the US. Nothing beats a homemade version, free of all the unnecessary ingredients.
What I love about these nut bars or chikki is that these are hassle-free.
- all you need is just 5 minutes of mixing the ingredients
- can be made with as little as 2 ingredients
- are nutritious and keep you satiated
- a perfect snacking option
- crunchy and delicious, love the sweet and savory flavors of roasted nuts
- love that these are free of refined sugar
- vegan, gluten free, dairy free
- sometimes this is my portion controlled dessert
- can be enjoyed anytime, anywhere
- perfect for an edible gift
I can go on an on. I am so in love with these nut bars / chikki. This recipe brings back so many memories I couldn’t stop thinking of all the Lonavala trips where we specially went chikki shopping. All the winter holidays spent with my family in Delhi enjoying Gajak. My grandma and aunt would often send Gajak for me if we couldn’t visit them that year. I remember this Fudge Shop in Sydney at the Darling Harbour that sold the best peanut brittle in town. Then ofcourse now the Kind Nut Bars that everybody is talking about these days. In short, chikki, gajak, brittle and kind nut bars are all the same thing except the way that they are sweetened is different. They all need an agent to bind them together and sweeten them, some variations use sugar while some use caramel or jaggery. So far I love my take on sweetening these bars. Just plain & simple maple syrup, makes these chikki / bars just sweet enough to be enjoyed.
What I also love about these chikki/bars is that if you don’t like them in a brittle or bar form, you can deconstruct them and enjoy smaller clusters of deliciousness. Dr.Mystermy and I preferred the bars however Little A likes the smaller deconstructed clusters as for him it was similar to granola. The smaller clusters can also be used as a topping on yogurt or milk for morning breakfast.
In short, both variations turned out to be good. If you prefer a savory version, you will like our Roasted Flavored Cashews. What do you think you will like? Drop in your comments below and let us know.
- 1.5 cups of nuts of your choice (I used [almonds|http://amzn.to/2zkVnHw], [peanuts|http://amzn.to/2z3cfC1] & [pistachios|http://amzn.to/2xDYq0i])
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ tsp salt (optional)
Preheat the oven to 325 F.
In a mixing bowlmix the nuts and maple syrup.
Line an [8 inch baking tray|http://amzn.to/2ykL3kJ] with [parchment paper|http://amzn.to/2xCiWda].
Pour the mixture into the [baking tray|http://amzn.to/2ykL3kJ]. Make sue the mixture is tightly packed, or the bars will deconstruct.
Bake the mixture for about 30 minutes. Temperatures will vary from oven to oven so it might take 5 mins less or more.
Allow the mixture to cool. Once the mixture is cool cut them into your desired shape of either rectangular bars or squares for smaller portions. You will have some loose mixture which can be stored in another container.
Sore them in an airtight container for upto 1 to 3 weeks or refrigerate for upto a month