Thursday, January 21, 2010

Rainy Day Baking

I adore oats (akin to this lovely post from Catherine Newman), and I love the added bonuses of it being a nutritional powerhouse as well as an ingredient my kids will always eat. Really, you should try Catherine's recipe for instant oatmeal - so delicious and so not $4 for 8 packets of a zillion ingredients.

Granola. Yum. This tastes so so delicious with almond milk, my new breakfast drink of choice in my temporarily dairy-free life. Won't bore anyone with getting into it, but I am sorely missing my daily cheese. Maybe I'm trying out granola as a cheese replacement. Tough competition.

I like my granola a bit crunchy, but not quite a full snap at the teeth. I also like a mild sweetness, but I'm not the mom who makes separate "kid food" so I work with a sugar level everyone finds acceptable. And my kiddos do not approve of little raisins or date pieces or cranberries or any other dried fruits hiding in the mix so I deal (although I do buzz quite a few of those sneaky treats in their instant oatmeal - shhh!). For a long while, we were enjoying the Nutty Granola from Ellie Krieger's book, The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life.

Now that's a delicious recipe. But since each small batch calls for a full 1/2 cup of maple syrup, which was $14 for the big bottle the last time I was at Trader Joe's, an adaptation was in order. We are not calorie-counters so substituting some canola oil for that moist maple syrup was fine by me, but I couldn't eliminate the maple flavor all together. At least for our oatmeal-loving household, I think this granola hits the mark on all counts. Until I move on to the next great thing!

Here's my latest favorite granola, adapted from probably every granola recipe I've ever read:

Preheat oven to 300F.
Mix the following together in a large bowl:
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup canola or other neutral oil

Then stir in:
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup wheat germ
3/4-1 cup mixed nuts (we use sliced almonds, and chopped walnuts and pecans)
pinch of salt

Toss to combine and spread in a half-sheet pan. Bake at 300F for 45-50 min. The granola will continue to crisp up as it cools. Store in a sealed container in the fridge. It won't last long!


chereemoore said...

This granola recipe sounds amazing. I can't wait to try it out.

ofttraveledpath said...

I'd love to hear what you think!