I refuse to admit how long ago I made up this recipe. I will not talk about how many times I have made it since then and just didn't get around to photographing it so I could post it. But, truth be told, I'm kinda glad I waited or I wouldn't have had such cool vessels to show it off in.
Recently it was my Birthday. My mom had come down to visit a few days before because my son was born 3 days before my Birthday. We always have a party with the whole family (my mom, and my husbands family) for our kids Birthdays. I thought I knew what she had gotten for me but then she walked in with this bag-o-goodies. She had been antiquing and had picked me up some food props (happy dance). I won't show everything here but they will be showing up in the future and I'll be sure to make note of them when I use them. She also made me a card, which is a tradition between us, because I always make her a card too. This time she had dug out some old pictures of me. I thought I'd share the vintage Amanda shots.
My mom made that oven for me when I was a kid. One of those all night Christmas presents that occurs on Christmas Eve. My kids play with it now though, so it has definitely gotten some good miles.
I think I still cook much in the same fashion. I toss in bits of this and that and my kitchen is a total wreck when I'm done. I guess some things don't change.
Regardless, I adored all of the antique pieces she got me for my Birthday and quickly tucked them safely away in my cupboard. Then at the beginning of the week I decided to make this granola recipe I had come up with at some un-mentioned time earlier this year. My husband may have laughed at me a little bit when I told him that this time I was going to photograph it and blog it before he ate it all. He may have said something like, "Challenge accepted!". Who's laughing now baby?
Back when the dinosaurs were still roaming the earth my grandfather got a wee bit hefty according to my grandmother. So she decided to put him on a diet. Around that time he started to make granola for his breakfasts. When I visited I would make it with him. I can still feel the warmth of his hands as he helped me stir all of the ingredients into the big bowl. The smell as it cooked. I cherish those memories now that they are both gone. When he was much older and was living in a retirement community I began making him granola for Christmas. I would make him a different one every year. To this day every time I pull a cookie sheet of warm granola out of the oven I think of him.
I wish I had been more creative back then. I was still green in the kitchen and lacking the confidence to come up with my own recipes. I bet he would have liked this one though.
This is one of the pieces my mom got me :)
- 5 cups of rolled oats
- 1/3 cup of wheat germ
- 1 cup of shredded coconut
- 3/4 cup of almonds (sliced or slivered)
- 3 Tbs. cocoa powder (I use dark chocolate cocoa powder)
- 1 tsp. of cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. of salt
- 2/3 cup of honey
- 1/2 cup of canola oil
- 1 tsp. of vanilla
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl combine the oats, wheat germ, shredded coconut, almonds, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
- In a saucepan over medium heat combine the honey and the canola oil. Stir until it is at a bare simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla. Pour the honey/canola oil mixture into the oat mixture and stir until well combined.
- Divide the granola between the cookie sheets. Spread the granola evenly into a single layer.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes. Halfway through the baking stir the granola and rotate the sheets.
- When the granola is done baking transfer it into a large bowl and let it cool completely, stir the granola occasionally to prevent clumping. Once cooled store the granola in an air-tight container in your refrigerator for up to two weeks or you can also freeze it in smaller portions to stretch it out.
Fact: Although this granola has chocolate in it you will notice that there is no refined sugar. I don't feel guilty at all giving this to my family for breakfast.
We really enjoy this granola with some milk or my personal favorite is using it to top off some homemade yogurt. Bonus: by shooting the granola for this post I "had" to eat a bowl.