Archive for August, 2013

Gaga for Homemade Granola

| August 17, 2013

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I like granola. I like it for breakfast and dessert. I like it over yogurt, in cereal and on ice cream. I like it, Sam I am.

And much like Janet Jackson, I want to be the one in control.

Combine the two and you’ve got homemade granola. About three months ago, I found an unintimidating recipe on the blog A Beautiful Mess. What I dig about their recipe is that it’s so basic, it gives you room to tweak it as you like. So, I did and this is what I came up with.

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Homemade Granola (adapted from the recipe on A Beautiful Mess)
Makes a little more than four cups / 10 minutes prep, 30 minutes to bake

2 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup raw whole almonds
½ cup raw sunflower seeds
At least 1 tbsp. chia seeds
⅓ cup canola oil
⅓ cup agave syrup
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
½ tsp. vanilla extract
⅓ cup raisins
⅓ cup dried cranberries or dried blueberries

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix all of the oats, nuts and seeds.
  3. Add the syrup. Mix. Add the oil. Mix.
  4. Add the salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix very well. Add the vanilla. Mix. (TIP: I prefer to add the salt in ¼ teaspoon intervals so that it’s evenly distributed throughout the blend.)
  5. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer the mixture to the center of the sheet and spread the blend out towards the edges. Make sure the mixture is spread out evenly so that everything gets a uniform toast.
  6. Once the oven is at 350°, bake the granola.
  7. After 10 minutes, take it out, give it a mix on the sheet, and then pop it back into the oven.
  8. After another 10 minutes, take it out, ADD THE DRIED FRUIT, give it a mix, and then pop it back into the oven.
  9. After the final 10 minutes, take it out of the oven, give it a mix, and then let it cool.

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The batch easily lasts me a month and stays crunchy as long as it’s kept in an air-tight container and stored in a cool spot in my pantry.

I like to incorporate as many organic ingredients as I can find (and afford) in one store (which, as you can see in the photo below, is Trader Joe’s). But, by no means do you have to do the same. Think eating organic is just hype? Are raisins icky? Do you prefer almond slivers, pecans or cashews? Can’t get past the ch-ch-Chia Pet commercials that plagued you as a kid? Please make your changes. I won’t stop you.

Ingredients

Also, just so you know, my oat supply is good for two batches and, much like shampoo to conditioner, I run out of oats before any of my other ingredients. It’s probably because I opt to use Trader Joe’s Old Fashioned Organic Oats and it “only” comes in 18-ounce supplies. I’m sure if you go all in with Costco-sized supplies, you’ll be set for the next year.

By the way: This post is brought to you as a result of the nagging of a new friend, one who annoyingly pointed out that I haven’t published anything to dig since March. To him I say, “Thanks, you filthy animal.” I’m grateful for the nudge.

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