Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sugar Free Granola

I like to be healthy at breakfast time. Starting the day well is very important to me, and then we have the odd treat, like bacon & eggs or pancakes and pastries on weekends.

There are a couple of things that I love to eat during summer, and then during the winter I like to mix it up a bit with porridge.

The first is a sort of mixed up bircher muesli, which I'm pretty flexible with the ingredients, but always using the base of rolled oats. I'm never quite organised to leave this to soak overnight, but I find that 15 minutes or so whilst I'm having my first cup of tea for the day is more than enough for the flavours to start to mix.


Ingredients for my cold oats are roughly 2/3 cup of oats with a handful of frozen raspberries and a handful of frozen blueberries, soaked in either yogurt (greek yogurt or vanilla Jalna are constants in my fridge) or full cream milk. Then add in a sprinkle of slivered almonds, finely sliced dried apricots and sometimes a few dried sour cherries. And a few chia seeds if I have them. I will also use a fresh mango, nectarine or peach if there's one sitting in the fruit bowl.


It's pure goodness, a satisfying and ice cold breakfast if you include the frozen fruit. Oats are great for cholesterol, but also for satiety, and I find that I don't normally need any morning tea if I've had oats in the morning. The frozen berries also turn the milk a deep berry colour, something akin to what cocoa pops do, only the healthy & natural version!


My other favourite breakfast is homemade granola. I'm a bit addicted, and not just to the taste, but also the whole process of making granola. It smells wonderful, and the roasting of the nuts make them super special, and intensify the crunch.  This version is a healthier granola, and sugar free, unless you choose to add dried fruits at the end.  (Here's a link to the other granola I love to make too). I honestly don't think that flavourwise the dried fruits are essential, the granola is sweet on its own, but they add another softer texture to the muesli.

I served it this morning with a few sultanas and sour cherries (again!) and a dollop of greek yogurt. Gorgeous weekday breakfast, something I look forward to it when I wake up.


This recipe is from the Rose Bakery Cookbook, my favourite cook book for the moment. And that is a big call with my cookbook collection growing each month!

Ingredients:

300g rolled oats
100g whole natural almonds
120g sunflower seeds
120g pumpkin seeds
1 Tbs wheatgerm  
125ml (1/2 cup) apple juice
4 Tbs sunflower oil, or another neutral oil

Dried fruit such as apricots, sultanas, raisins, sour cherries - to taste, optional

Method:

Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees.


Mix all the dry ingredients and coat in the sunflower oil and apple juice.
Spread evenly over a large baking tray.
Place in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour, turning the granola every 15 minutes or so to ensure the muesli is toasted evenly.
Allow to cool before mixing in dried fruit.
Serve as an accompaniment to other cereals, or by itself, or with yogurt.


5 comments:

  1. Oooh I've been wanting this cookbook! So it's sugar in the form of apple juice to sweeten, interesting. It looks absolutely delicious!! My kind of breakfast :)
    Heidi xo

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  2. Oh it looks delish! I've tried sweetening/binding granola together with honey/maple syrup or agave but never apple juice! Thanks for the tip & that cookbook sounds amazing. I keep seeing it popping up on blogs! x

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  3. Heidi - apple juice is more than enough to sweeten the granola, works a treat. If you get to Paris on your honeymoon make sure you get to the Rose Bakery, I don't think you'd be disappointed!

    Hannah - it's a gorgeous book. I'll be making a lot more from it in the coming weeks. It is also about 95% veggie!

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  4. I've been wondering if granola with apple juice works - looks great! I'll definitely be trying it shortly - cheers!

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