Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Granola Time

I've been running out of ideas for a good breakfast before work. I usually make up a batch of muffins and take those with me, but I needed a change of pace. They say it's the little things in life right?! So, I made up some granola which I eat plain, with milk like cereal, or in yogurt. I am a cereal lover so I have to say that's hand down my favorite way to eat granola.

Health Information:
I have heard many different controversies concerning store-bought rolled oats. I decided to go with it, since I'm a huge fan of baked oatmeal and granola. If anyone else has more information on it, please send it my way! This is the blog that helped convince me to go ahead with store-bought oats: "I think that oats are one of the most fabulous grains solely because it is so easy to ensure you are purchasing the whole grain. According to the Whole Grains Council “oats almost never have their bran and germ removed in processing. So if you see oats or oat flour on the label, relax: you’re virtually guaranteed to be getting whole grain.” This rule of thumb applies to rolled oats, instant oats, quick cooking oats, steel cut oats, you name it. Whew! That certainly makes things easy and in summary… *Whole Grain = All oats" -Lisa Leake

And of course honey & maple syrup as sugar substitutes does not mean GO FOR IT! (lol and that's even coming from me) but, they say to eat your sugars in the morning so you will burn it off during the day...So that is what I'm doing here & sharing it with you too! (Not that me sitting at my computer at work for eight hours a day burns anything other than my eye balls...but hey that's what they say so I'm not going to argue with the statistics) :)

& remember don't be like me...get creative with your baking and share any variations you have! Granola is great with coconut flakes, dried fruit and all variations of nutty stuff ;)  I was simple this time around because I was doing a pantry clean out.

Recipe:


Ingredients:
3 cups oats
1 cup chopped almonds (put in Ziploc and pound, or use food processors, or be a true woman & chop by hand) 
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger (can be a little stronger, opt out of this if your not a ginger fan)
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 tbls butter
Wax/Parchment Paper 

Directions:

 1.  Preheat your oven to 250 degrees
 2. Stir your oats, almonds, sunflower seeds, & spices together in a medium bowl.



 3. In a medium pot over medium heat (or whatever good temperature your stove has, to all you apartment people out there: I feel your pain!) heat your honey, maple syrup & butter together until everything is melted and mixed together, stir occasionally to help butter melt.




 4. Pour your melted mixture into the medium bowl of dry-ingredients. Stir together making sure all the dry ingredients are evenly coated with the sugary-goodness.



5. Place the parchment paper onto your baking pan. Pour the mixture onto the wax-covered pan and evenly flatten and spread it out.



6. Bake for 65-76 minutes (you want it to be crispy and a little brown)

7. Store in an air-tight container (usually lasts about 2-3 weeks, unless you eat it all before then like me)