Yes, it is still summer and it’s lovely! It is breezy good outdoors today…and what a beautiful afternoon. I peeped outside through the blinds on my patio door. There were children running all around and playing on grass near the lake. There were grandparents, mom and dad with their kids sitting on a picnic blanket under a tree and eating away their sandwiches in rather large bites and chatting. There was a thousand cheer! We would hopefully get to hang on to these warm, bright, sunny happy days for probably a couple more weeks.
J and A aren’t back here yet. They’re left with 3 more weeks of vacation at their grandparents. J would be back just in time when her new school session starts after the summer break. And until then, I promised her the wonderful days she wanted with her Deedu and Dadu (what she calls my Ma and Baba). So whilst, my babies are having a fun time, I have been missing them too much. Never before have they been away from me for so many days.
Very recently, I’d been out on a back-to-school shopping spree. The back-to-school stock was fast diminishing, and when S is back, she’d have her classes beginning the very next day! So, obviously I wanted to buy and keep things ready for her before she is here. I picked up several things…more than a cart full. I got a new backpack, stationary, folders, lunch box and lunch bag, juice boxes, packed snacks, breakfast cereals, a water bottle and some other classroom supplies that her school had requested. Yes, and as always, I made sure I chose most of the items, that had “Box tops for education“.
On lovely days like this, J would ask to play out all the morning, then step in for a brief lunch break and rush outdoors again to only get back for dinner later the evening (so typical of a 6 year old!). S would often knock on the patio and request for some refreshments or treats for her and her gang of 7 neighborhood friends. And “treats” for 1st and 2nd graders generally mean ice-pops, cupcakes, cookies, juice boxes…or any naughty food that has a little sugar in it! And it’s just when you hand out treats to a few kids, and are done emptying out the box, you’ll find 2 more little monkeys hopping and popping their ways in for their share of the treat!! So, before J promises her friends some treats, I make sure I have enough supply for them all, plus a few extra for those unexpected cute little extras that show up often! I am not one sugar-freak mom and I do allow my babies to eat a little sweet-and-naughty food once in a while. Also fortunately, my neighborhood has some great mommies…who’re sane and fair in their judgement too. We all let our kids indulge in some sweet treats, though not overly.
I saw the kids playing since this morning. Most of them had called or come over to inquire about J. And when I’d tell them there was still some time before J came back, they’d walk back unamused, with shoulders sagging in disappointment! To cheer, I thought of doing a quick treat and charge them up.
I had the new boxes of breakfast cereals and some leftover white mini marshmallows. And what else? Nothing. I needed nothing more to make those no-bake cereal bars! Well, technically, I do add a few drops of vanilla extract for flavor and a little butter to make the bars more gooey and creamy, and less sticky!
Among the cereal’s I had got, I also had some rice Krispies. Though J loves them in her cereal mix with milk, she isn’t a fan of the rice krispy cereal bars. Most of the times, when she’d get the usual store-packed rice crispy bars as favors from friends, I would have to volunteer to eat it up (if she didn’t have another friend at hand to donate the treat to!) Therefore, in the process (and though J never got herself to love them), I particularly grew fond of them. J rather prefers her trix, fruit loops and pebbles. And because I was missing my girl so much, I brought a whole bunch of different kinds of breakfast cereals for her.
I lovingly made the marshmallow bars today, using different breakfast cereals, and then cut them into squares, to make them more kid-friendly. I had some store-bought granola left over, and thought of using them up too! It took me about an hour to get these bars ready (I left them to cool and set for a little longer than usual). Then, I stepped out with a plate full of these delicious, colorful and melt-in-the-mouth marshmallow and cereal squares. Went to the little runners, hoppers, and munchkins. Stooped to them with the plateful. And every single crumb was gone and licked off right away!! They said it was super delicious and yummy good. A couple mommies that were around got a piece of the dessert too. Isn’t that a wonderful thing? I thought of J, called her and promised her a fresh batch of these squares when she is back to me.
The squares, sure are an easy treat to do and try. Quite the kid-pleaser and crowd-puller! Do make these delicious ones and let me know how you liked them!
Love, light and happiness to you all…
You will need ⇒
(Servings: makes 6 squares or 3 bar)
- 1.5 cups white puffed mini marshmallows — use regular or vegan marshmallow brands available locally
- 1.5 cups granola or breakfast cereal of your choice (preferably frosted)**
- 1.5 tsp butter
- 0.5 tsp vanilla extract
- A container (I used a Sterilite box, of approximately 7″x5″x2.5″ size to get about 1 inch thick bars using this recipe)
- Minimal butter to grease the container
- Your choice of add-on, or decoration or topping: Chocolate chips, sprinklers, frosting, almond slivers, chopped nuts, raisins, melted chocolates, dried cranberries, roasted nuts, pretzel bits, dried/candied fruits, or any other.
**some of the types of cereals that can be used alone or mixed: (1) Trix (2) Cheerios (3) Cocoa puffs (4) Rice Krispies (5) Pebbles (6) Honey combs (7) Fruit Loops (8) Cinnamon toast crunch (9) Lucky charms (10) Granola
Making the bars and squares⇒
- Grease the container with a little melted butter or cooking oil spray.
- Heat the marshmallows and butter gently in a pan, on a stove top (or use a microwave oven). Keep stirring and heating till the marshmallows have softened or melted. Do not over heat (overheating hardens the mixture). When done, take off from the stove.
- Add vanilla drops and the cereals or granola. With a mixing spatula, fold them together to coat all the cereals. (If you are using chocolate chips, add them when the marshmallow-melt isn’t too warm, so the chocolate chips don’t melt.)
- Carefully transfer the sticky mixture into the greased container.
- Wet your hands a little with clean, running water, or grease your palm with a little butter/oil (water works best for me!), so the mixture does not stick to the hands.
- Using both hands, press down the mixture into the container to form a tightly packed layer and an even surface at the top. After pressing, I had about an inch thick bars to work with.
- If you’d like some topping or a decoration sprinkle, add them at this stage.
- Close the container with a lid or a food-grade film plastic seal, and place inside a refrigerate to cool and set for about half to one hour.
- Once nicely set and cooled, use a knife to cut out rectangular cereal bars or squares. Decorate if you’d love to add/top with your favorite something!
- Serve immediately, or store in an airtight container or a ziploc bag (remove any excess trapped air) and consume within 2-3 days. You could also place the container or bag into a refrigerator.