Believe it or not, I do not consume vast quantities of butter, sugar and white flour with unbridled abandon.  Particularly now I am a mother (and responsible for not just my own nutrition), I do have a heightened awareness of what I eat.

Many items that I bake and share on this blog, are, to be perfectly frank, only ‘sometimes treats’.  Certainly not everyday extravagances.  (Well, not now!)

More and more, I am trying to healthify recipes where I can to create an end product with greater nutritional value.

When it comes to shortbread, and its inherently high levels of butter and sugar, there is only so much you can do.  But for this next cookie in the line up, I thought I would give it a shot.

Plain, white flour has been replaced with a combination of wholemeal (whole wheat) flour and rolled oats to add fibre.  The quantity of sugar has been squeezed down to an almost modest amount to reduce the intake of refined sugars.  And although the butter component is still relatively high (it is shortbread, after all!), an egg has been added to boost protein.

And for the taste?  Certainly not as sweet as some of its shortbread counterparts, but certainly a cookie that will satisfy, with perhaps a little less guilt!

{ Oat & wholemeal shortbread bars }  Original recipe by Julia Tuomainen @ Mélanger

* Ingredients *
150g wholemeal flour
150g rolled oats, proceedd
75g brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
150g unsalted butter
1 egg
1/2 cup ‘no added sugar’ jam (I used the ‘French’ jam in tall glass jar)

* Directions *
Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl, and add in the processed oats.  Set aside. In the bowl of a mixer, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add the egg and mix well, then add the flour mix and stir only to combine.  Spread half of the dough on the base of a prepared 18 x 27cm baking tin.  Wrap the remaining dough in plastic wrap.  Chill both for 30-60 minutes.  Preheat the oven to 180C.  Spread the base of the dough with the jam, then crumble the reamining dough on the top.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until slight brown.  Transfer to a cooling rack.

Makes approx. 12-15 cookies