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Food & Dining // Heart-y Chef
Diana Helfand

Raising The Bar On Healthy Snacks

Hannah Schauer Galli is gearing up to guest direct The Toxic Avenger from Sept. 12 to 29 at Manoa Valley Theatre.

Hannah, who moved to Hawaii in 1997 to work on her Master of Fine Arts in theatre directing at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, has a long history of working with local theater productions and nonprofits.

The Toxic Avenger is a musical based on a series of B movies from the 1980s,” explains Hannah. “The town of Tromaville, N.J., is drowning in toxic waste. Melvin Ferd tries to take on the corrupt mayor, but the mayor’s goons drop him in a vat of toxic waste and he re-emerges as The Toxic Avenger, a green mutated superhero who is bent on cleaning up Tromaville.”

Hannah sums it all up by saying, “It’s a fun, comic book-style romp full of catchy rock music written by Bon Jovi’s Brian Adams.”

As a director, Hannah knows what it’s like to eat on the run, and shares the following recipe with MidWeek readers.

“In the theater, grabbing a quick snack you can eat on your way to rehearsal is essential,” says Hannah. “Finding something healthy is always a challenge. This is the answer at our house. We make a double batch almost every weekend to carry us through the coming week.”

Oats are an excellent source of manganese and a good source of fiber, selenium, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. High-fiber foods such as oats can help in the prevention of heart disease and help remove cholesterol from the digestive system.

BAKED OAT BARS

Note: Any combination of nuts, dried fruit and seeds is delicious in this! Our other favorites include raisin, peanut with cracked flax seed and almond, cranberry, pepita (pumpkin seed).

* 1 1/2 cups rolled oats(not quick cook)
* 1/2 cup chopped pecans (unsalted, raw or roasted)
* 1/2 cup dried cherries
* 1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
* 1 teaspoon cinnamon
* 1 1/4 cups plain soy milk (or milk, rice milk, etc.)
* 1 egg (or egg substitute to equal 1 egg)*
* 1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix dry ingredients. Mix wet ingredients. Pour wet into dry. Stir to combine. (This will seem too wet, but trust it!) Pour into a 9-by-9-inch baking dish lined with nonstick foil.

Bake for 45 minutes. Cut into 12 bars. Store in refrigerator.

If doubling recipe, bake in a 9-by-13-inch pan and increase cooking time to 50 minutes.

*Vegan version: Replace egg with 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water

Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program. Email heartychef@hotmail.com.

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