Random thoughts on life: When did we begin calling people “granola”? Why? If you make granola, are you granola? I’m not sure I think I fit into the idea of a “granola” person. Why is it that being a “granola” person has a negative connotation? Hippy’s are kind, happy people as far as I know.
There is this new wave of hipsters we all know about and there seems to be an anti-hipster group that thinks hipsters aren’t authentic. But they are. If you can be a hipster can you be a granola-ster (that is person who makes granola but is not in fact granola)? Hmmmmm……
Here are some urban dictionary definitions for your viewing pleasure:
Granola: A person who dresses like a hippy, eats natural foods (granola) and is usually a liberal, but in all other ways is a typical middle class white person and is likely to revert back to being straight when they finish college.
Hmmmm……ok not sure I’m liking the “typical middle class white person” thing…
Granola: A tree hugging, free spirited hippy minus all the drugs.
Hmmmm……I guess that’s not so bad. I can like being free spirited.
Urban Dictionary is always fun for wasting a bit of time on the internet. Its a good way to tarnish a pure mind as was the case for me in college when people started throwing around words like…I shouldn’t even say them. Not here. Only whispers and giggles in private. People do things like that?!? Thank God my husband isn’t a freak.
The thing is making granola is soooo….easy. And good. I don’t know why people are so incredulous when they hear that someone makes their own granola. Ok, ok there are a lot of ingredients involving nuts and seeds, but if you have extra left over you can just make another batch when it’s gone. Because you’ll want to. When I eat granola I think the birds got it right. Nuts and seeds, who needs more really?
On the granola: the uncooked quinoa is awesome – little and crunchy, the perfect seed for granola to mix things up. Pumpkin seeds (pepitas) have so much flavor and are an amazing other seed addition. The beaten egg white is important because it gives the granola some crunch and allows it to make clusters. I used dried lemon zest which worked really well and you can find in the spice area at your grocery store. I think fresh lemon zest might have a tendency to burn and would stay away from that.
A couple of tips: be very careful at the end of cooking to not burn the granola because it can go from just right to burnt really quickly. Also, though it is noted below, its important not to add the already roasted ingredients until after baking the other ingredients or they will get overdone. Ok good! (That’s what the funny old Japanese people say around here, it always makes me smile with my heart).
Your house will smell like heaven.
Today, try to find a few ways to make your life seem like heaven is this earth.
- 3 cups old-fashioned oats
- ⅓ cup uncooked quinoa
- ⅔ cup pumpkin seeds (pepita)
- ½ cup coarsely chopped pecans
- 1 cup coarsely chopped almonds
- 2 Tablespoons flax seeds (optional)
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 ¼ teaspoon ginger
- 2 ½ teaspoons dried lemon zest (should be able to find this in the spices area)
- 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
- ½ cup olive oil
- ⅔ cup honey or agave
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 beaten egg white (beaten until foamy)
- 1⅓ cup apricot chopped, ⅓ inch pieces
- ½ cup cranberry (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking sheet with lip by lining with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, (be sure to add only not already roasted ingredients at this time) stir together oats, quinoa, pumpkin seeds, pecans, almonds, flax seeds, cinnamon, ginger, lemon zest, and sea salt.
- In another medium bowl stir together, olive oil, liquid sweetener (honey or agave), vanilla, brown sugar, and egg white.
- Pour the liquid mixture into the oat mixture and stir to combine. Place in prepared baking sheet and spread around. Place in oven and bake for 25-35 minutes, stirring at about 15 minutes. Be sure to keep a close eye on it toward the end, if it starts to burn it will turn dark brown and bitter quickly. Granola will be done when it is toasty, light to medium brown.
- Place on cooling rack and stir in apricots, cranberries if using, and any nuts or seeds that were already roasted (my pepitas were roasted so this is when I stirred these in). Allow to cool to room temperature before putting it in jars and sealing. Granola will keep for about a week room temperature, longer in the refrigerator.