Granola bars were crisping at 350 degrees in a favorite Pyrex 9x13 Friday when I sat down to read the article behind this MSNBC headline: "Kitchen calamity: Reports of shattering cookwear on the rise." Holy chocolate chip! As if there weren't enough to worry about.
The story opens with an exploding egg casserole at a Michigan Grandma's Christmas brunch and goes on from there. The long and the short of it is, manufacturers of glass cookware no longer use the type of glass that made Grandma's Pyrex pie plate safe as cast iron. The new type of glass is prone to breakage if mishandled. Doesn't happen often, but it does.
So when the timer went off, I put on welding goggles and body armor, donned elbow-length potholder gauntlets and threw a thick towel over the bars before lifting them gently from the oven. Not.
But I did place the hot pan on two potholders, as advised in the article, rather than plopping it down on the cold stone cutting board where it usually goes. An abrupt shift from hot surface to cold is believed to result now and then in Pyrex or Anchor Hocking shrapnel.
So I'm eating a homemade granola bar right now, with orange juice --- the alternative when not up to preparing Mother Nature's most perfect breakfast: Oatmeal with honey and peanut butter. Here's the recipe:
3 cups old-fashioned Quaker Oats
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup butter
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup miniature M&Ms or miniature chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped dried pineapple
1. Mix the oats, flour and baking soda thoroughly in a large bowl.
2. Add the M&Ms, nuts, cranberries, dates, pineapple or any other combination that appeals to you and mix well.
3. Melt the butter with vanilla, honey and brown sugar in a sauce pan and blend well. Add liquid to the dry ingredients and mix well.
4. Place the mixture into a buttered 9x13 baking dish and press firmly to even out. Place in pre-heated 325-degree oven and bake 20-25 minutes.
5. Remove from oven (carefully), place pan on potholders or a thick towel, wait about 10 minutes before cutting into bars (I use a pizza cutter), then allow to cool thoroughly before removing from pan.