Monday, April 12, 2010

Granola, yum

One of my favorite things to snack on is granola, specifically Trader Joe's Just the Clusters Vanilla Almond Granola. Have you had it? It's goood!

That said, it isn't the healthiest thing ever, and while not overly expensive, not free, so I figured I could do better.

I found this recipe and decided to give it a try.

On top of greek yogurt

the rest of the batch in my reused Newman's Own spaghetti sauce jar!

Looks pretty good, huh?

Vanilla Scented Granola
* vegetable oil cooking spray
* 4 cups old fashioned oats
* 1 cup sliced almonds
* 1/2 cup golden brown sugar, packed
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1/3 cup vegetable oil
* 1/4 cup honey
* 2 tablespoons sugar
* 4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Position rack to middle of oven and preheat to 300*.

Lightly spray large baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Mix next 5 ingredients in large bowl.

combine oil, honey and sugar in small saucepan; bring to simmer over medium heat.

Remove from heat; stir in vanilla.

Using hands, toss mixture until thoroughly mixed.

Spread granola on prepared baking sheet.

Bake until golden brown, stirring occasionaly, about 30 minutes (but check after 20).

Transfer sheet to rack; cool granola completely.

(Can be made two weeks ahead. Store in airtight container at room temperature.) Makes about 8 cups.

Notes: I halved the recipe, since I wanted to try it before fully committing. Next time, I would use less honey, less oil and more vanilla.


Anybody else a gardener? This will be year 4 of an "official" garden for me. The first year was great. We had spinach, lettuce, tomatoes, basil, beans and some cilantro. The last two years? Not good. The weather was horrible--cold, rainy--and looking back, I should have added more compost. Oh well. This year I'm determined it's going to be a good gardening year. To hold me over, here are a few success pictures from 3 years ago:

Lovely mixed greens


So what is everyone planting in their garden? Any tips to share?