April is rice month at About Southeast Asian Food. After posting my recipe for Vietnamese pandan sticky rice balls, I’m following it up with a non-Asian rice snack prepared by my daughter, Sam, who loves homemade granola bars but gets frustrated when we can’t complete all the ingredients to make them. Rolled oats, in particular, are not easy to find here in the boondock. So, instead of feeling disheartened, she learned to make snack bars with things we usually have at home like boxed cereals, puffed rice and marshmallows.
Sam made this batch of snack bars a couple of weeks ago. There were two versions. The first version had puffed rice; the second version had puffed rice, cereals and chocolate morsels. To bind the loose ingredients together, she used melted marshmallows and butter.
There are two common ways to melt marshmallows. The first is to use a double boiler; the second is to microwave the marshmallows. Sam uses the microwave method as it is faster and more convenient (never mind the fear-mongers who think that everything in the kitchen — including the microwave, slow cooker and non-stick pans — will kill them).
- 250 grams plain marshmallows
- 1 tablespoon butter at room temperature
- pinch salt
- 2 cups puffed rice (or a combination of puffed rice, cereals, dried fruits and nuts)
- melted chocolate
Place the marshmallows in a microwaveable mixing bowl. Heat on HIGH for 30 seconds until bubbly. If they don't bubble after the first 30 seconds, repeat for another 30 seconds, and so on.
When the marshmallows are bubbly and soft, add the butter and salt, and stir.
Quickly dump in the puffed rice (or whatever combination you're using) and stir to combine.
Shape the mixture using small moulds. Alternatively, spread on a baking pan lined with non-stick paper, cool then cut into your desired shape and size.
Using a spoon, drizzle melted chocolate over the cut bars (or whatever shape you prefer).
Will keep at room temperature for two to three days.