Friday, September 11, 2009

First attempt at granola making!

Good evening! How is everyone? Once again it is a Friday night and I'm chilling at home. I made dinner tonight and just now able to sit down and relax. I've been wanting to make a post, but I've just been preoccupied with other things. Don't worry, tomorrow night I'll be heading out. My friend is getting married soon and it is her bachlorette party. Doing it Las Vegas style like usual. Having dinner at House of Blues and heading to LAX to go clubbing. I haven't been to a club in a while! I'm so use to having a 10pm bedtime and I'll be out really late tomorrow. Yuck! I sound old huh? LOL

Anyways, I made granola for the first time yesterday!! I have to keep trying and perfecting a recipe. It wasn't very sweet and I like when my granola kind of clumps together. Practice makes perfect right? I was inspired by the recipe I found on Mama's Weeds blog. It was something I always look for, simple. I had all the ingredients on hand and I decided to take a shot at it. You can click this link for her recipe, and below I slightly modified it.  

Maple Pecan Granola  
2 cups of old fashion oats
1/4 oat bran
1 tbsp of butter
1 tbsp of extra virgin coconut oil
2 tbsp of pure vanilla bean maple syrup
1/2 cup of raw pecans, slightly chopped (I just used my hands to break them up)
1 tbsp of orange zest
Pinch of kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Use a large glass bowl to mix everything together. First melt the butter in the microwave for 10 seconds, then added the coconut oil to the warm butter. Let them melt together and then add the maple syrup. Add a pinch of kosher salt. Then mix in the old fashion oats, oat bran, pecans, and the orange zest. Mix everything till it well incorporated. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spread the granola on top. Put it in the oven for 20 minutes. Afterward take it out to mix everything together. At this point I was smelling the wonderful scents from the oven. Put it back in for another 5 minutes. Take it out and let it cool down. Once it is fully cooled down, put the granola in a mason jar to remain fresh!

Always like to be ready when baking! ;)
Before heading into the oven. 
Great for topping yogurt with berries. 
In the mason jar it goes! This would be a nice holiday gift for your healthy friends! ;)

My thoughts? Well there is definitely potential in making homemade granola. You can control the sweetness and how caloric-ally dense you want it to be. It is definitely healthier then store bought granola, and it is cheaper! One pound of organic old fashion oats from the bulk bin at Wholefoods is only $1.19. The zest was a nice addition to the maple syrup. A granola I tried at Wholefoods the other day had a citrus addition to it but they wanted $8.99 for a 16 oz bag of granola! So it inspired me to add it to my own granola.
The only thing with my granola is it wasn't sweet enough and wet enough! I didn't really use actual measuring spoons, just a regular eating teaspoon. So maybe that wasn't accurate? Next time I'm going to add more sweetness and coconut oil. I will most likely not use oat bran again because it really didn't stick to the oats. Flax seed or hemp seed would be a better addition. Which proves making this granola recipe and any other recipe is really flexible. I look forward to future granola making!

I've been having some of the best lunches lately. I'm hooked on veggie wraps! I recently tried goat cheese for the first time and I love it!! I like the herbed kinds and just yesterday I picked up a goat brie! OMG! Creamier than cows milk brie. Next I want to try a cheddar goat cheese, I hear it is the best. It always good to experiment and taste new foods. It adds variety and makes food even more interesting to enjoy. I love the sprouted whole wheat wraps made by Ezekiel. They are very hearty and I love the chew you get from it, and the nuttiness! I spread goat cheese on or sometimes hummus. Then I load it with romaine lettuce, alpha sprouts, cucumber, tomato, purple onion, radish etc. Basically whatever veggies I have in my fridge. Roasted veggies are awesome too. The one I'm showing you that I made the other day has herbed goat cheese, 1 slice of black forest ham, romaine lettuce, alpha sprouts, tomato, onion, cucumber, and yellow mustard.

See those little pickles? I love them!! Little French pickles I picked up at Trader Joe's.
So I forgot the yellow mustard and added it last. :) Try not to do that! LOL

And lastly my dinner tonight was awesome! I had a nice New York steak with my favorite side dishes as of late, grilled sweet potato fries and roasted summer squash and grape tomatoes. The steak was huge! I told my dad I only wanted half and he added the entire thing to my plate! It was perfect, medium rare and so tender. I rubbed it with kosher salt, steak seasoning and herbed garlic. Let it marry for about 30 minutes and sizzled it on the grill. Awesome!!! Can't wait for my left over steak tomorrow!

Love to load up on the veggies! Garnish with basil, mmm! 
Organic ketchup and grilled sweet potato fries? You must try it!
The huge steak!
The weather is finally cooling off in Las Vegas. Meaning if you wake up super early in the mornings it about 70 degrees. Awesome working out weather!! I've been running up and down stairs, breaking records I've set for myself. Tomorrow I'm doing an obstacle course with running and running up and down stairs. Can't wait because I love working out outside!

Have a great night and a fantastic weekend!!
Always, Fallon


GarlicBOSS said...

Looks great and I like the photo of the oats spilling out of the jar...thanks

Fallon said...

Thank you! I try to be creative when it comes to taking pictures...of food! :)

Proud Italian Cook said...

Hi Fallon, I've always wanted to make granola, now you've inspired me to try it, but first I want that steak dinner you cooked!

Shelby said...

Fallon it all looks delicious!

I love homemade granola too, it is so much better for you!

Pam said...

Lots of tasty food here. I have been wanting to try making my own granola - your recipe looks great.

catherine @ said...

I keep threatening to make homemade granola since my daughter (suddenly) says she likes it--thanks for the great recipe!

Unknown said...

Hey I just saw this post! I'm so glad you tried the granola, I found it from a while ago and I still make it, there are so many ways you can adapt it to your liking.

And it's too funny you mentioned giving it away as a holiday gift, I've done just that! :)