Monday, March 16, 2009

Weekend Project: All Things Granola

One of the things I decided to do in 2009 was to make all of my own granola (which I eat a lot as you probably know by now and I apologize if this is repetitive and/or boring). I have two types that I regularly make. One is a citrusy recipe from Heidi Swanson's Super Natural Cooking and the other is one that I have improvised. It's roughly 4 cups of oats, 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut, 1 cup ground flaxseed, 1/2 cup maple syrup, 1/2 cup coconut oil (or canola depending on what I have) and a tsp. of vanilla. I made this version last weekend at 8 am on Saturday morning only to set off my smoke detector. I couldn't see any smoke and while I opened the windows and was fanning like a crazy person because I can only imagine how much my neighbors were cursing me, every time I stopped moving the air around, it went off again.
So, I turned off the oven. The granola had been in there for maybe 10-15 minutes and I figured that even with it turned off, it might stay warm enough to give it a nice toast. It was a long shot since it usually cooks for 45 minutes, but after about an hour, I checked it and it was PERFECT. There were big clumps (which almost never happens) and it was lightly golden brown. Pretty thrilling.
I'm not entirely convinced I can deliberately make that happen again, but I'm planning to try!

The other thing I made were the Big Sur power bars from 101 cookbooks (clearly I love Heidi's recipes!). I made them according to the recipe, but honestly, they were a little soft and I wasn't crazy about the raw taste. So after they sat for a few days, I decided to bake them. I lined a baking sheet with parchment, spread out the bars, and baked for about 45 minutes. I didn't expect them to melt into one full sheet the way they did (there is a fair amount of brown rice syrup in them), but I let them cool, and then cut them and they are amazing. You sort of have to trust that they will be okay since they are completely soft when they come out of the oven, but the flavor of them is so much better. I highly recommend them. (This image of them is from Becks & Posh.)

As you can see, I am no recipe developer, but I do feel free to reinterpret recipes as I see fit—particularly with ones I make regularly. Which is fun and makes cooking more personal. Sometimes things don't work out, but I definitely got lucky with these two!

And here are some recent blog posts that I wanted to share:
*The 12 month letterpress club at Sycamore Street Press, March Edition (via Poppytalk Handmade Artists
*Plants need companions too from Modish
*When you feel like you don't measure up from Modish biz tips (who recently added this blog to their great big list of bloggers!)
*The Crafts Dept blog from the crafty ladies over at Martha Stewart.


  1. Hello! I just discovered your blog-lots of nice things on here! :)

  2. Amy, I'm adding you to my blog list too! I loved all your work at Hallmark Magazine - you are so talented!