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Monday, February 27, 2012

Granola, Revisited


I eat breakfast every single morning without fail.

Sometimes breakfast is at 1pm if I've had a late evening.

Sometimes breakfast is string cheese.

But, it will be had.

For the past week, I've been on a horrible rotation of string cheese and a clementine.

It's horrible because within an hour, I'm starving.

Prior to that, I had a three month long stint of two soy sausages and an apple.

That was lovely, but after three months, even the loveliest of things become at least slightly lackluster.

"Here lies Lindsey, sister, daughter, extreme soysage devotee".
my favorite
Last night, right around the time Meryl won and my life was made entirely complete because I love her, I was inspired to start a new rotation.

The new rotation needed to be filling, packed with protein, low in sugar, portable, fast to make, easy to eat, and above all else, delicious.

Oh, and it needed to include chia seeds because they are my latest and greatest obsession.
remember these guys?
As it turns out, the novelty item (with the ever-catchy slogan ch-ch-ch-chia) happens to grow from the newest power supplement, chia seeds.

The health claims of chia seeds put flax to shame.

They carrie almost half your daily need of fiber in a one ounce serving, all while balancing your blood sugar and providing you with the most Omega-3 Fatty Acids of any plant-based product.

It sounds exhausting. Except it's not because they also provide significant amounts of energy-providing protein.

Anyways, somewhere along the way I settled on granola.

Since Israel, I've begun to have a craving for an old favorite, Greek yogurt. My bestie Emily got me hooked circa Junior year of college and at my lowest point, I was having it northwards of 3 times a day.

This story has a point.

The point is, a glob of Greek yogurt with a scoop of granola, a slice or two of strawberry and a dollop of agave hits all of the aforementioned prerequisites.

Cut to the kitchen...

Ch-ch-ch-chia Gr-gr-gr-granola
Servings: makes around 5 cups

Ingredients:

2 cups oats (not instant)
1/4 cup pecans, chopped
1/4 cup almonds, slivered or chopped
1/2 cup quinoa, dry
1 tablespoon flax meal
2 tablespoon chia seeds
1-2 tablespoons brown sugar (depending on desired sweetness)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons applesauce
1/4 cup Agave Nectar
3 tablespoons peanut butter (I used chocolate almond butter)
2 teaspoons coconut milk
2 tablespoons dried blueberries

To Do

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine first eight ingredients in a large bowl. This is the oats all the way down to and including the salt.

Combine the next four ingredients in a small bowl. This is the applesauce down to and including the milk.

Add the four wet combined ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine.

Spread mixture on parchment lined baking sheet evenly but not obsessively.

Place dried blueberries evenly on top of granola.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring once or twice throughout the process.

Let cool and enjoy.

You may keep this stored in an air tight container for up to three weeks.

Nutritional Information

One half cup of this granola will set you back a mere 200 calories while providing you with 6 grams of protein and 4.7 grams of dietary fiber (almost 20% of your daily requirement).

Vogueing
My favorite peanut butter. The chocolate isn't too sweet at all.
Big goopy mess in the bowl. It took a mere 10 minutes to get the ingredients together, combine them, and take this picture. I bet I could've gone faster if Jean Dijardin wasn't so very enchanting.
See? Spread evenly but not obsessively.
Post oven, all golden and crunchy and tongue-burning-delicious
I don't really know...I guess I felt like getting fancy with my iphone camera.
All stored up and ready to go for my 10 days' servings...assuming no one else gets into it. Wishful thinking...le sigh.
This morning - Greek yogurt, agave, strawberries and granola. Two hours later and no hunger in sight.
Alterations

Nuts - you could really substitute any nut you'd like: peanuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, etc.

Chia seeds and flax - you can eliminate one or both or substitute sunflower seeds or poppy seeds.

Almond butter - any nut butter would work here and any flavor would work as well.

Coconut milk - feel free to substitute any milk variety in any flavor. Almond chocolate milk would be divine.

Dried berries - again, any dried fruit to your liking can be substituted, or you can eliminate the fruit all together. I also think dried or candied ginger would give it a nice kick.

Up Next

In a neck and neck battle, hummus pulled through.

Stay tuned for a variety of options this week.

In the meantime, what is your go-to breakfast during the week?

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