Oh January…January…So condemned to be the cleanup of last year’s holidays and failures. Eat well, no sweets. Do everything perfectly this time. It can just be so….stressful. Which is not how I want to live. My ideal self is more of an athletic barefoot contessa. Peaceful at heart, forgiving of myself, motivated to be my best, and always my own best friend and coach. In this ideal selfdom, there is no room to be cruel to myself for eating chocolate at Christmas. Frango mints do not come around everyday. There is room for determination and ferocity of spirit when it comes to fitting in our pants but bringing ourselves down does no good.
In my January, there is room for more than green smoothies and detox cucumber salads. In my January, there is granola, which accompanies me as a snack for work, that tops my oatmeal, that is there for a little bite of goodness. My January is about living well and homemade granola is part of that for me.
My recipe has a good amount of maple and cherries; it will make your house smell like heaven. The egg white is to give it some crunch and a bit of chunkiness. Quinoa is amazing in granola, tiny little bits of texture. Pepitas give sooo much flavor. Enjoy, and love yourself this January. xo
- 3 cups old fashioned oats
- ⅓ cup uncooked quinoa
- ⅔ cup pumpkin seeds
- 2 Tablespoons flax seeds (optional)
- ½ cup walnuts
- 1 cup pecans
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt
- 1 cup maple
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 beaten egg white (foamy)
- 1 ½ cup dried cherry
- ****Do not add in any pre-roasted nuts or seeds until after it has baked with the fruits or it will burn.
- Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking sheet with lip by lining with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, stir together oats, quinoa, pumpkin seeds, pecans, walnuts, flax seeds, cinnamon, and sea salt.
- In another medium bowl stir together maple, olive oil, vanilla, brown sugar, and lightly beaten 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 30-40 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 cherries 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.