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Monday, May 18, 2009

Granola

Granola is one of those recipes that's been practically beaten to death, but it's also one of the staples our family makes the most of. It kills me when I walk through the store looking at the assembly of prices of pre-made, frozen and boxed foods; most of them things that could be easily made at home. There are so many isles in the grocery store I can breeze right past, because they are filled with things we make ourselves! I like to add up in my head how much money we save as I walk through everything. Don't need that (saves $8.00), don't need this (saves $13.00).. it really is incredible the amount of money we save by making it ourselves. This goes for everything from canned soups, jarred spaghetti sauce, frozen pizza, side dishes and appetizers. We literally go to the checkout with meat, cheese and produce!

Cereal, especially granola, is one of the many goodies best made at home! The way we buy our oats itself is a big money-saver, we don't buy that so-called "family size" at the store for $12.00 a box, we buy whole oat groats.. in 50lb. bags. As far as making real "cereal", you know.. the flaky sugar-coated corn flakes and the like, I haven't had a lot of success. I used Barley flour with the hopes of making a better-than-Kelloggs flaked cereal.. but the outcome was more of a crunched up breakfast cracker. Yick. Not impressed in the slightest!


As of now, this is our favorite granola recipe.. the one the kids say "yay!!" to :)

Granola

In a saucepan melt 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, add 1 cups crushed pecans (or any other kind of nut!) and toast the nuts over medium heat until the nuts are fragrant. Add:
2/3 cup honey or real maple syrup
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla


Set aside. In a large bowl combine the following:
10 cups oats
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
2/3 cup brown sugar, or sucanat (raw brown sugar)


Stir all is mixed in well. Pour the nut/honey mixture over the dry oat mixture and stir until until all is very well incorporated, busting up any lumps as you go. Pour out onto lined baking sheets and spread evenly. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, stirring every 8-10 minutes.


Yummy! And this makes just enough for one breakfast for our family. So if you have a small family, you will have leftovers to store.. if you are a large family, you can double it. Just make sure you have your Navy-size bowl out!

Blessings on your day, ~*~Jessica~*~

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7 comments:

Heather said...

Hi - I was wondering... If I need to leave out the nuts, do I still need the butter? I have a child with nut allergies and would still like to be able to make homemade granola. Thanks!
Heather

~Ithilwen~ said...

Mmmm, Josh asked me to find a granola bar recipe months ago, and then Sarah and I were working with Dad and our Aunt Tabitha had sent Uncle Cliff some bars and they were AWESOME!

It is amazing what you can save if you just look, expect catfood, we looked for recipes for that and it'd be MORE expensive : ) And we have 5 cats! TTYL, dear!

Love,
Michelle

Theresa and Jessica said...

Hi Heather!

I would cut the butter down to just one stick. I ended up adding the extra half because the nuts seemed to be soaking up some it. I don't know if I would cut it out completely though :)

Ithilwen :) Oooo.. we love granola bars! I put a recipe for them in the spring issue too :)

Yeah, there are things that aren't cheaper made at home.. like meatballs ;P I priced out the difference of buying extra meat to make our own, and it would actually be more expensive, more work and they wouldn't last as long as just buying the big bag of italian meatballs already made!

Wowser! Five cats?! That's a lot of cats! :) ttyl :)

Heather said...

Thanks so much! I made it this morning and it's a hit! Now, how/where do you get oats in bulk? :>

Theresa and Jessica said...

Heather- Great! We buy whole oats (oat groats) and then flake them ourselves. However, you can buy 50lb. bags of rolled oats (flaked oats, same thing). You should be able to get both at a natural food store, if they sell bulk grains. Another option is a co-op. I'd look around and see if there is one in your area :)

~*~Jessica~*~

~Michelle~ said...

I have this in the oven now : ) It looks good :D Blessings on your conference dear! :D
Love ya,
Michelle

P.S. yes, I did change my profile name :)

Shell said...

This seems like a simple one. I was going to try and show my oldest daughter how to make granola. I think this recipe will be nice and easy.

Thanks,
Shell

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