As you may have noticed from reading around this site, Cycle Somerset prides itself as being a social cycling club and views a good cuppa and slice of cake as an integral part of each ride.

However, we also recognise that it is very much a case of all things in moderation and when it comes to eating for energy on the go, we are generally in agreement that not only are home-made versions of energy bars, snacks and drinks much cheaper than shop-bought ones, they are also are infinitely tastier.

Here are some of our members' favourite recipes: if you've got your own tried-and-tested recipe, send it over to Jo who, as well as uploading it (and any pictures) is also willing to help out with taste-testing. :)

Sara's Spiced Date, Cherry, Almond and Chocolate Bars

  • 200g pack of dates
  • 40g dried cherries
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • Tiny pinch of cayenne or chilli powder
  • 100g whole almonds


  • Remove stones from dates and put dates in food processor with cherries, cocoa powder, spices and mix until thick paste.
  • Toast almonds in dry non stick frying pan over medium heat until they start to become fragrant. Be careful not to burn them.
  • Add to the dates and pulse to chop nuts.
  • Line a plastic tupperware with cling film. Press mixture into dish and refrigerate for an hour.
  • Turn out onto a board and cut into 8 - 10 bars. (Tip: Wipe knife in hot water soaked paper kitchen towel between cuts to prevent it from sticking.)
  • Wrap each bar in cling film
  • Keeps for a month in the fridge ... if they last that long! (Don't let Jo know you have them in your bag) (edit: How rude! But probably true. Jo.)

Colin's Apricot and Almond Wedges

This recipe is delicious and easy for 'non-cooks' as it's made in the microwave. It's questionably 'healthy' because of the fat and sugar content but definitely fits the bill as both an instant and sustained energy booster.

  • 4oz dried apricots
  • Boiling water to cover
  • 1 tablespoon of ground almonds
  • 5oz sunflower margarine
  • 5oz dark soft brown sugar
  • 5oz wholemeal flour
  • 5oz rolled oats
  • (optional sunflower seeds to sprinkle on the top)


  • Line a shallow glass or plastic dish with cling film (an 8" glass casserole dish lid is ideal).
  • Place apricots in a bowl and cover with boiling water and microwave for 5 minutes. Allow to stand for 15 minutes.
  • Continue cooking for another 5 minutes until tender. Drain and puree in a blender or push through a sieve. Beat in the ground almonds. (I grind whole almonds in the blender as I have them in the cupboard and they have more flavour.)
  • Melt the margarine in a large bowl for 90 seconds.
  • Mix in the flour, sugar and oats.
  • Spoon half the mixture into the base of the prepared dish and press down with the back of a metal spoon.
  • Spread over the purée.
  • Top with the remaining mixture and smooth the top.
  • (Optional - sprinkle sunflower hearts over the surface and press in with a spoon.)
  • Microwave on high for 8 minutes. Allow to cool and the dish and cut into 8 wedges. Transfer to a rack to finish cooling.
  • When cold, keep in an air tight tin. They will keep for several weeks.

Sue's Marzipan Slice

  • 8 oz flora light
  • 1 or 2 oz brown sugar
  • 12 oz Oats (I use Tesco’s Organic Oats which are large & solid, so I grind 8 oz for few seconds in food mixer to about half size with floury bits, and use 4 oz as they come. Small soft oats would probably be fine straight from packet.)
  • Marzipan


  • Line a 11 x 7 inch tin with non-stick baking parchment.
  • Melt the flora and sugar together in large saucepan, then remove from heat.
  • Mix the oats in well.
  • Press half mixture into lined tin (use an small bit of baking p’ment & knuckles to press it down, much easier than spoons & knives).
  • Cover with thin slices of marzipan cut off the block (easier to slice if cold from fridge)
  • Crumble remaining oat mixture over top & lightly press
  • Bake approx 40 mins 170deg (fan oven).
  • Slice while warm then break up pieces when v cold.
  • OK frozen for 2/3 weeks, then seems to lose flavour, but quick microwave revives it.

Carleton's Chocolate Brownie's
(Enjoyed by those on the Church Stretton Holiday)


300g dark chocolate such as Bourneville, broken into pieces

100g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

1/2 tsp salt

3 large free range eggs

50g brown sugar (preferably light, but demerara works)

150g caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

100g plain flour

100g chopped walnuts

Place a glass bowl over barely simmering water in a pan, making sure the bowl does not touch the water. Put the chocolate and butter in the bowl and stir occasionally.

Meanwhile grease the baking tin and line with grease-proof paper so that it reaches up the sides.

In a mixing bowl, break in the eggs and whisk in the sugars until incorporated.

Once the chocolate and butter have melted, stir them together and take the bowl off the heat.

Whisk the egg mixture into the chocolate mixture until well mixed.

Next, fold in the flour and walnuts until the batter is just mixed, making sure there are no lumps of flour hidden in the bowl.

Pour the batter into the 20cm squared lined baking tin and gently push it around until it covers the base and is vaguely even. Place the tin in the middle of the 160c fan or 180c standard oven.

After 25 minutes take the tin out of the oven and leave to cool on the side. The mixture should be set on top, but if you cut into it with a knife it will be a little wet.

Leave to cool completely before cutting into squares, eat sparingly, you have been warned.
1 brownie = 25 miles of cycling (just a guess)

Carleton's Energy Bar.

300g raisins
100 Oat bran
120g Apricots (ready to eat)
70g sunflower seeds
70g Walnuts
2 Tablespoons cocoa
1 Tablespoon Orange flower water

Blitz it all in a food processor and keep going until it starts to form a paste, at which point press it into a lined dish or roll it up in greaseproof paper into a sausage shape, then cut into whatever sizes you require

Carleton's Amaretti Morbidi

Makes 40-45 amaretti

400g almond flour (ground almonds)

225g caster sugar

4 drops bitter almond essence

4-5 tbsp amaretto

110g egg whites

Preheat the oven to 200°C

Mix almond flour with caster sugar. 

Add bitter almond essence and amaretto. 

Gradually add the egg whites and mix until it forms a firm but sticky dough. 

Roll the dough into balls (2-3 cm) and then roll them in icing sugar to coat.

Bake in the oven for 13-15 min. 

Remove from baking tray as soon as they come out of the oven and allow to cool on wire rack.

Cycle Somerset is not responsible for the content of the recipes nor the results of your baking.

Last updated: December 2011

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