ABOUT THE RECIPE:
Just a few basic ingredients come together to make up these scrumptious Raspberry Oat Squares that do triple duty as a healthy dessert, afternoon snack or bountiful breakfast treat.
Makes 12 to 16 Squares
2 very large ripe bananas, peeled
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 cups gluten-free, quick cooking rolled oats
1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries
¼ cup unsweetened shredded dried coconut
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons raspberry preserves
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line the bottom of an 8-inch square rimmed baking pan with unbleached parchment paper, leaving an overhang of 2-inch “wings” on two sides of the pan. Put the bananas and maple syrup in a large bowl and mash into a chunky purée using a potato masher or large fork. Stir in the oats, cranberries and coconut.
Spread half of the oat mixture in an even layer in the prepared pan. Spread the raspberry preserves in an even layer over the oat mixture. Spread the remaining oat mixture in an even layer over the preserves. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until slightly golden. Put the pan on a wire rack and let cool 3 minutes. Using the paper "wings" carefully lift the squares out of the pan, and set them on the wire rack. Let cool 15 minutes.
Lifting with the paper “wings,” transfer the squares to a cutting board and slice into 12 to 16 squares, using a serrated knife, wiping the knife clean after cutting each square. Let cool 20 minutes before serving, or loosely cover, refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours and serve cold. Stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, leftover squares will keep for 3 days.