Today was a wonderfully fallish day here. The weather was perfect, and even though all the boys were home 'sick' (they were feeling fine, just have nasty-sounding coughs...the kind that people freak out about if they hear you hack within 50 feet of them...the kind teachers REALLY don't want to hear every 2 minutes all day long...) but they just were well enough to help me get some cleaning done (wasn't that convenient?), so I hauled out all my fall decor. There's not tons of it or anything...just enough to make it cozy, and give everybody warm fuzzies when they walk in the door greeted by the smell of a pumpkin spice candle.
The cool breeze and clean house inspired me to do some baking, and I've had a recipe for granola that I've been wanting to try for a little while, so I decided today was a perfect day. I've never made granola before, but turns out, it's easy-peasy, is a healthy snack that the kids loved, and made the house smell awesome! You'll definitely want to give it a try... There's stuff you can add to it, like raisins, dried cranberries, or even chocolate chips (which, I better never do, or I'll eat the whole batch myself!!)...but we're going just straight up plain here. Todd and the boys mixed it in some yogurt and loved it, and I'll confess to scooping up a few too many handfuls of it just so. And the best part is, it makes you feel all domestic to say, "Yeah, I make my own granola...'cuz I'm crunchy like that..."
(The recipe was forwarded to me by my friend Laura because it's one she found that is similar to what she does. I asked her for her recipe, but she's a foody who just wings-it with all her cooking, and she know I am utterly incapable of cooking that way...at least, not and come out with something edible! But, in an effort to give due credit...it goes to both Laura AND the site. I wanted to mention this, so as not to have you think I have any actual cooking talent, oh, and by the way, you can go to the original recipe if you click the link, if you'd like the nutritional info).
4 cups old-fashioned oats
1 1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries or chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
In a bowl mix the oats, almonds, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. In a saucepan warm the oil and honey. Whisk in vanilla.
Carefully pour the liquid over the oat mixture. Stir gently with a wooden spoon; finish mixing by hand. Spread granola in a 15x10 inch baking pan.
Bake 40 minutes, stirring carefully every 10 minutes. Transfer granola-filled pan to a rack to cool completely. Stir in raisins or cranberries. Seal granola in an airtight container or self-sealing plastic bag. Store at room temperature for 1 week or in the freezer for 3 months.
Go ahead and try it...you'll like it!!