Thursday, March 06, 2008

Granola Recipe ***Updated at bottom of post!**

Whip out your Birkenstock's and throw out you bra's, girls! We're making granola!

I have been accused from time to time of being a "granola", because I eat a relatively healthy diet and I don't really need to where a bra. Also, sometimes, in the winter, I forget to shave my legs. But I digress...these accusations have come from individuals who don't know that I always (meaning, at all times) have a 3 lb bag of Peanut M&M's in my cupboard. Y'all, sometimes a girl needs a little junk.

Anyway, the following recipe is my favorite granola recipe because it is yummy, and also because it comes from a family that is dear to my heart.

So without further ado, I give you:

The "Stewart" Granola

First, grab a cup each of your favorite nuts. I always use almonds and walnuts, cuz I'm nutty like that, but to each his own, you know?

Take those nuts and throw them on a baking sheet and place them in your oven at 375, to toast them up a bit. When they give off a nice smell, and the almonds start to crack a bit, they are ready (about 10 minutes or so). Take them out and let them cool.

While the nuts are in the oven, pull out the rest of the ingredients:

5 cups oatmeal
1/2 tsp salt
1tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup dry powdered milk
1/3 cup oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla
(almonds, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.)

A note on syrup: some say that using pure maple syrup makes this recipe taste better. I say that pure maple syrup is pricey, and the people in this house don't really taste food as much as they inhale it, so they don't know the difference.

Also, it seems that there is a lot of sugar in this recipe. There is. But I would rather my kids eat this for a snack than say, Sugar Smacks, or Pixie Sticks. Plus, if they eat this stuff, with the protein in the nuts and the whole grain of oatmeal, then I know they are getting some good nutritional benefits. It also means I can eat all the Girl Scout Cookies, without sharing.

Mix dry ingredients together.

Go check the nuts. Burnt legumes are never classy.

Next mix the oil, brown sugar and syrup up in a microwaveable dish (preferably something not plastic). Zap that sweet mixture for a minute or so. Add vanilla after heating. Set aside.

If your roasted nuts are cool, go ahead and chop them up a bit. If you have a "real" processor then go ahead and pulse them for a second or two. If you have a cheap blender/ processor that makes a mean smoothie but refuses to actually process anything, then go ahead and get the chopping board and a big knife out.

Note to self: save $$$; get a real processor.

Mix together the nuts, dry ingredients, and sugars. Pour out on cookie sheet...

Pat it down with the back of a spatula (preferably one in your signature col-ah) until it looks like this....

Place in the oven for 15- 20 minutes @ 375. More time for crunchy granola, less for a little more chew.

Let stand in the pan for about 10 minutes, then take a spatula and lift the granola off the pan a little. When completely cooled break into bite sizes pieces and store in an air tight container (I use re-seal able bags).

Personally, I don't like dried fruit, but if you do, be sure to add you dried fruit after baking.

I like mine crunchy. This is good to eat with an apple for a snack. Or on yogurt. The Mister eats his like cereal with milk poured over it.

Be warned! This is filling and very addictive.

Happy Day!

**before you spread the granola on the pan for baking be sure to oil the pan lightly, otherwise the granola REALLY sticks to the pan! Forgot to mention that!


mer@lifeat7000feet said...

I'm just sitting here thinking that I have everything I need to make why not?!? It sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing!

Diane@Diane's Place said...

Here by way of Mer....

This sounds yummy, and like Mer, I think I have everything on hand to make this!

Thanks for the recipe. ;o)


meh said...

do you have to use the dry milk? Is there a substitute, like non-dairy creamer or something? Just curious!! I want to make it but refuse to pay $8 for a box of dried up milk flakes. I am cheap that way!

Unknown said...

You know, I have never tried it without it. I wouldn't recommend using regular milk because that would add too much moisture and might end in a mushy mess.

I always buy the small box of generic powdered milk and it is always under 5 bucks. Which may still seem very expensive, but it lasts forever!

Try the recipe with out it...and let me know how it turns out!


meh said...

Will let you know!

Blue Skies said...

I just copied this down because I found some "certified gluten free" oatmeal and want to try this for Sarah. My question is, can you omit the powdered milk? What does it do for the recipe? Should I find a reasonable substitute?