Monday, January 24, 2011

Remember that one time...that I made granola

Recently Joe's become a wee bit obsessed with granola. He's a granola snob actually. He's picky. He likes crunchy with some big clumps and just the right taste. Not too skimpy on the nuts either. Like I said, picky.

Which is why I was filled with joy when I got it right with homemade granola on my first try. He loves it. Says it's better than store-bought. I might experiment with the granola a bit...but mostly this one is just a winner.

Making granola is easy. Seriously. Really easy.

And it makes a filling breakfast. But watch the portions because just 1/2c of this recipe packs about 270 calories. But they are good hearty whole grain type calories (and not whole grain in the creative sense like how General Mills tries to convince me Reeses Puffs cereal is healthy for me with all its "whole grain"...no no real whole grain). But tasty whole grain so don't be afraid!

If you are calorie conscious eat your 1/2 cup with skim milk. If you are like me and skim milk just won't cut it try non-fat greek yogurt (a single serving has 130 calories, 14 grams of protein, and 0 grams of fat...and the texture beats regular yogurt, hands down). In the single containers it's a bit pricey ($0.80 a piece) but if you buy a big container it's like $2.50 and will last for many filling breakfasts.

Anyway on to the recipe with pics. I adapted from my friend Emily's recipe...she has several for granola over on her site: Cherry Almond, Cinnamon Raisin, and Maple Pecan. If you haven't met Emily go check out her blog. She cooks better than me, takes superior food photos (this post is Exhibit A...the comparison is painful), and she has a very cheery personality too. Thanks for the recipe Emily

Cinnamon Cranberry Pecan Granola
Dry Ingredients
5 1/2c old fashioned oats
1 c wheat bran (germ works too...find either in the bulk section for uber cheap)
1 1/2 c pecans, chopped
3/4 c whole wheat flour
2 T cinnamon (yes T, not tsp...you read that right)
pinch salt

Wet ingredients
1/2 c oil (vegetable/canola)
1/2 c water
1 1/4 c honey (I know, a LOT of honey)
2 1/2 T vanilla (yes T, not tsp, trust me)

Add at the end
3/4 c Craisins

Directions
1. Mix together dry ingredients in a large bowl. Like so:
Cinnamon and pecans...you know it's going to be good no matter what comes next.

2. Mix together wet ingredients in a small bowl--whisk away. The honey resists the whisking, but whisk it you must.

3. Pour wet into dry. Stir until combined, then stir some more...you probably have some dry clumps on the bottom. Check. See, I was right. You don't want dry spots so keep stirring.

4. Pour into a thick layer on a parchment lined large cookie sheet (pat yourself on the back for having parchment in the house). Yours should look like this:

5. Bake in 250 degree oven for 2 1/4 hours, stirring about every 20 minutes. I like big clumps so I more flipped over sections. If you like yours with smaller clumps, then stir more to break up clumps. Add the craisins at the last 20 minutes or so.

Finished product with bad lighting:
Now you can place it in a container and sit it next to your baby's "cereal' which my husband says tastes "like cardboard"...poor baby--all the teething you are enduring will be worth it when you can eat granola instead of cardboard baby cereal.
(Can you tell over 2.5 hours passed from start to finish...? The photo quality is severely diminished by the lack of natural sunlight...lame to the max.)

And now I'm off to work. Did I mention that I had granola for dinner? Well I did... I couldn't help myself.

1 little remarks:

Sarah Flib said...

Sounds good, Anna. I've been meaning to make granola for a long time and haven't gotten around to it. I don't like nuts, though. Would this recipe work without them, or do you think I'd need to sub something else so it wasn't too goopy?

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