I am a sweet breakfast person. Toast with jam and sun butter, fruit smoothies, fruit with soy yogurt and granola, millet rice cereal with dried cranberries and coconut, barley flake porridge with blueberries and buckwheat pancakes with maple syrup are among my faves. A creature of habit, I eat the same breakfast everyday until I cannot stand it any longer and move on to the next thing. Except for pancakes. Those I usually only have on my “Solo Pancakes Saturdays.” Yes, that’s right. Pancakes for one.
This week, my sweet breakfast of choice has been homemade granola with soy milk. Every day. Sometimes, for fun, I add a fresh mango on the side. I came back from Sayulita, a surf town in Mexico, a couple weeks ago totally inspired food wise. But more on that later. My granola inspiration came from the absolutely fantastic hotel that we stayed in, La Casona. Every morning, a breakfast of fresh tropical fruit, homemade granola, freshly baked chocolate banana muffins (!), yogurt, coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice was laid out for us. I was in heaven. I skipped the yogurt but actually was able to buy soy milk at the mini super across the street. Yes, soy milk in Mexico. They had Silk brand in original, unsweetened and vanilla varieties! Ah, it’s the small things in life, really. So when I used all the soy milk, I moved on to the almond milk that a previous hotel guest had left in the communal fridge. Jack wasn’t able to enjoy the yummy granola as it had almonds and pecans in it. So, as soon as we got home I whipped up a batch based on the La Casona recipe, using sunflower and pumpkin seeds instead to add a nutty flavour. Was it good? Well, we have managed to burn through the whole 11 cups in a week or so. So here I am making another batch.
To those of you unable to eat gluten: make sure your oats are “Certified Gluten-Free.” Click here for more info on oats and celiac disease.
This is one of those recipes that can be tweaked to suit your tastes. I love coconut, cranberries and cinnamon so this recipe is right up my alley. If you prefer other dried fruits and are able to eat nuts, add them by all means! Just try the recipe… you’re guaranteed to feel the smug satisfaction that comes with making things from scratch that usually come in a package!
What’s your favourite breakfast?
6 cups oat flakes (not instant)
1 cup mixed sunflower and pumpkin seeds (or nuts of your choice)
1 cup unsweetened fancy shred coconut (so fancy!)
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1 heaping tbsp. cinnamon
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup dried apples, chopped
1/2 cup agave (or honey)
1/4 cup organic cane sugar (or brown sugar)
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup light-tasting oil (coconut, sunflower, etc.)
1 tbsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or oil it.
Whisk wet ingredients together in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for a few minutes.
In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients together, except the dried fruit.
Pour wet ingredients into granola mixture and mix well.
Spread granola mixture onto prepared baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, stirring halfway through.
Cool granola on baking sheet for 15 minutes.
Stir in dried fruit and store in an airtight container.
Makes 11 cups. Enjoy on its own as a snack, with milk or non-dairy milk, or with fruit and yogurt or soy yogurt.
Side note: I am kind of obsessed with parchment paper right now. I was too cheap to buy it for awhile (not that it’s expensive or anything) but am a total fan now. Lining a baking sheet with it means you don’t have to grease it, and then don’t have to wash it either! Plus, depending on what you’re baking, you can reuse the paper. It’s also especially good when baking with gluten-free flours. Win, win, win!