Let me tell you a story about two loopy, jet-lagged girls who thought they were going to die.
I was skyping with my sister the other day (the same day I made these amazing Vegan Strawberry Jam Oatmeal Bars) and we were reminiscing about the backpacking trip we took to Ireland back in 2013. We had dreamed of taking a trip to Ireland together since we were little and it finally was happening. We were pretty stoked. Since she was living in Virginia and I was living Florida at the time, we met up in Atlanta for our flight to Dublin. It was a red-eye and we ended up watching the movie About Time instead of sleeping. When we arrived early the next morning we were pretty exhausted, but we had a long bus ride to catch that would take us to our first destination. We got some coffee, found our way to the bus station, and snoozed off and on during the long bus ride to Kilarney.
We got into Kilarney (our favorite city in Ireland) at around 3 or 4 in the afternoon. We were already pretty exhausted, but we knew we had to stay awake for a while longer to get our bodies on track with Ireland time. We found our B&B, dropped off our backpacks and then made our way outside to walk around in the fresh air and explore a little. We returned to our B&B around 6 and sat on our bed talking and using the internet for a while.
Before we knew it, we were passed out.
A couple of hours later we were jolted awake by a loud, blaring alarm. I mean, I’m talking LOUD! Thinking that our B&B was on fire, my sister groggily leaped out of bed and started pulling out all of our chargers from their sockets, thinking that our charging phones had started an electrical fire. Still in a panic, we both rushed to put our clothes on so we could run out and see what was happening. When I walked out of our room, I expected to see all the other guests congregating in the hallways for direction or rushing to the exit, but there was no one in sight. Everything, except for the alarm blasting, was calm. I started peeking down the different hallways, looking for someone who could tell me what was going on. Finally I found the owner of the B&B. In as calm of a voice as I could muster I asked her, “Uh, what’s that noise. Should we be worried?” She responded in the most relaxed tone, “Oh, someone just set off the fire alarm. It’s nothing.”
Back in the room, after gaining a little more consciousness, but still very loopy, my sister and I laughed until our bellies ached and tears streamed out of our eyes. We couldn’t believe the fear we felt over something so uneventful. We also couldn’t believe how quickly our bodies went into survival mode, even when we were half asleep. We probably laughed for fifteen minutes straight. I’ve never had a better gut-busting, eyes-rolling-to-the-back-of-my-head laugh in my life.
We still laugh about that moment and probably won’t ever forget it. It was fun to talk about it the other day when we skyped, right after I made these amazing Vegan Strawberry Jam Oatmeal Bars.
Guys, I know I keep saying it, but THESE bars really might be my new favorite recipe on the blog. They are so fruity and sweet and have a rich, oatmeal crumb base and topping. When they bake the strawberry jam gets all gooey and binds the oatmeal and shredded coconut topping together. After Brett took his first bite he said he wanted to eat 6 more. We can’t get over how delicious these bars are and they are incredibly simple to prepare. They make for a great snack or even a quick breakfast on the go.
I really hope you guys give this recipe a try! If you do, I’d love to know your thoughts! Leave a comment or take a picture and tag #theconscientiouseater on Instagram!
- 1¼ cup quick cooking oats
- 1¼ cup spelt flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cup coconut oil, melted
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 10 oz. jar of strawberry jam (280grams)
- ¼ cup shredded coconut
- Preheat your oven to 350F/180C and grease an 8x8 baking dish and set it aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the first four ingredients. In a small sauce pan, melt the coconut oil. Then add it, along with the maple syrup and vanilla extract to the oat mixture and stir until a moist dough forms. Reserve about ¾ cup of the oat mixture for topping.
- Press the remaining mixture into the bottom of your prepared baking pan. Spread the jam over the top to within ½ inch of the edge.
- Add the shredded coconut to the reserved topping and then sprinkle it over the jam. Press down slightly to get the crumb topping to stick into the jelly.
- Bake for about 25 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.
- Cut into 16 squares and enjoy!