If you had told me a year ago that I would be mountain biking upwards of 20 miles in a weekend, over rocks, roots and the occasional fallen log, I would have laughed and changed the conversation. I didn’t know then that some crazy people actually clip their feet into tiny metal petals – yes, locking your feet into the bike – and if I did, I certainly would never clip my own shoes in. I had no idea that bunnies, squirrels, and groundhogs would dart widely in front of mountain bikes just like cars like tiny suicidal madmen. And oh yeah, I mocked the tight silly spandex outfits that I saw riding by…. Little did I know that I would be the spandex clad maniac with my tiny little shoes locked into deadly metal clips hiking the bikes out onto trails dodging rodents several nights a week. Little did I know I would love it.

But let me let you in on a little secret, I suck at mountain biking. I’m getting better, but I’ve got a long way to go yet. I know, I’m not supposed to come on here and tell you that I stink at mountain biking, that I crashed into a log today and went sideways off the bike into the rest of it… Or that I fell right over for no reason on flat ground into a giant pile of overgrown weeds. I’m not supposed to say things like that. But I want you to know that that’s the way it is.

I know how to cope with failures in the kitchen, and let me tell you, there are quite a few. The other day I screwed up baked beans… Seriously. Baked. Beans. A full pound of navy beans and bacon went into the trash. I shed a tear and went out and bought more beans. That’s how I deal in the kitchen. I start over again and do it until it’s right. I’m still learning how to cope with the bike.

On the bike, I dust myself off and ride on. I don’t want a pity party, I just want you guys to know that we all suck from time to time and that’s 100% ok. I keep going back out there; keep trying.


Baked Bars

from Baked


For the crust:

  • 2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
  • 2 1/2 cups finely ground graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:

  • 1 1/3 cups walnuts, toasted and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup white chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup butterscotch chips
  • 3 1/4 cups (26oz) sweetened condensed milk


Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13inch baking dish.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and sprinkle coconut evenly over it. Bake for 7 – 10 minutes, toss, and bake for an additional 3 minutes. Let cool 3 minutes before trying to handle.

Toss the graham cracker crumbs with the toasted coconut in a large bowl. Add the butter. Using your hands, combine the mixture and turn it out onto the prepared baking dish. Press the crust into an even layer on the bottom and up the sides. Refrigerate crust for 15 minutes.

Remove crust from refrigerator and bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Increase the oven temperature to 325 degrees F.

Sprinkle the nuts over the cooled graham cracker crust. Sprinkle chocolate chips, white chocolate chips and butterscotch chips on next. Evenly pour the sweetened condensed milk over the filling. Gently shake and tap pan to make sure the sweetened condensed milk is even.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, rotating the pan every 10 minutes, until golden brown and bubbly. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before cutting into squares and serving.




  1. No pity for you! You’re a rock star – makes me want to get up and go, too. Would I have these bars waiting for me?

  2. My aversion to pain has kept me clear of mountain biking. I love being out in nature and all; it’s just those close encounters with fallen log stories that validate my decision. I think you’re awesome for pursuing it and continuing to improve at it though.

    Knowing that those bars are waiting for you when you get home is definitely good incentive too. Dudette has a playmate coming over today. These might be the perfect snack treat. Many thanks!

  3. I really admire you for your mtn biking. I love your instagram pics. I would never do that. I can barely ride a bike in a straight line. ha!

  4. Haha you are too funny. All sorts of animals darting in front of your bike, too funny. I swear some of those squirrels have a death wish.

    Anyways, these baked bars are like unreal. I mean wow, they would be extremely dangerous in my house because I wouldn’t be able to stop eating them.

  5. I’ve never been a good bike rider and haven’t been on a bike in years. Hubs on the other hand loves it. Almost every weekend he goes out and rides it for hours.
    great looking bars, I made something similar a while back. I have to try your version as well

  6. You may still need to work on your mountain biking, but I am pretty sure you’ve got fabulous amazing holy crap I want one of those bars covered!

  7. Boyfriend and I went mountain biking accidentally last weekend (we didn’t realize the trail was quite so hilly, or non-paved!), it turned out to be lots of fun. Good for you on the 20 miles a weekend! Totally deserving of some baked goods during the week.

  8. These look delicious!! I’ll take a big slice, minus the mountain bike adventure lol

  9. omgosh. these look so freaking good! i would not be able to keep them in my house for fear i’d eat the entire pan!

  10. You didn’t suck at making these bars! They look awesome, I recently went the other way with my mountain bike and switched it to road spec. I didn’t want to buy a road bike cause I really like my MB but I do miss the trails..

  11. Everything about your description of mountain biking made me want to hide under the bed! I’m very impressed with your fortitude. Perhaps your baked bars will provide good inspiration!

  12. Back in the mid 60’s, a very good friend of the family made these for us. We all immediately fell in love with them and my Mom asked for the recipe. When she gave us the recipe it didn’t have a name. We aked her what they were called and she didn’t know. The friends name is Barb. So, for the last 40+ years they have been called Barb’s cookies and are an all-time family favorite.

  13. Another delicious creation for me to drool over – I’m featuring this in today’s Food Fetish Friday (with a link-back and attribution). I hope you have no objections and I always love dropping by to see what you’ve created…

  14. love these! I have all kinds of “magic bars” and “seven layer” bars and bars on this theme with graham, various baking chips…this is so me. Love these!

  15. Oh heck yes these need to be in my belly 10 minutes ago. As for mountain biking I haven’t done that in years and years. I do clip into my bike at spin class though. I think it would scare me to do that on a mountain bike where the chances of tipping over are higher.

  16. I so suck at biking. I think it’s because I’m afraid on oncoming traffic, bees, and curbs. I actually biked through a nest of bees and almost fell off the curb into oncoming traffic. The cars got a great side show on their drive by. I need to learn how to drive on the road and not on the side walks.

    These bars look amazing! They would totally make me feel better after falling of my bike. Happy riding.

  17. These look awesome! My OH is really into biking but I’m so not! Would rather watch and cheer 🙂

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