So, I really wasn't ready for summer to end. I'm still gazing longingly at pictures I took over the summer, still wearing my Keens, still have my summer dresses out, even though it's clearly too cold for them.
These are the things I am missing most:
The rush of adrenaline when the frigid waters of the north Atlantic hit my chest as I plunge into a wave on a sunny afternoon . . .
Watching my dog, happily off-leash, leading the way down a sunny path alongside blackberry brambles and stone fences . . .
The smells and tastes of a meal prepared in the company of loving friends.
And last, but certainly not least, MABEL'S HOMEMADE GRANOLA!
Diane made homemade granola at the restaurant and whenever the new bananas came in, I'd fix myself a bowl of yogurt with a big helping of homemade granola, topped with fresh slices of banana.
Ahhhhh, HOMEMADE GRANOLA!! Crunchy, fruity, with good grains and nuts, some sweetness, some cinnamon.
Now even though I lost weight this summer, I can't credit the homemade granola for that, because, as Diane says, there's nothing really lowfat about Mabel's homemade granola.
There are lots of ways to make granola, lots of different ingredients you can include, depending on your tastes. Mabel's granola has almonds, bran cereal and honey. I started experimenting with making my own, using what ingredients I have on hand at my house. Here's what I came up with.
2 cups chopped walnuts (good fat)
1/4 cup flax seed (good fat)
1/3 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup blue agave nectar (you can use honey if you prefer)
1 stick of unsalted butter, melted (bad fat, but trust me, your granola will suck without it)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt (because anything sweet needs salt)
Combine all of these ingredients in a big bowl and toss them well.
Some of these measurements are approximate. You need to taste your granola before you put it in the oven. Is it sweet enough for you? Maybe start with less sugar if you don't like it sweet. As my friend Jim said when he watched me make this, "I see," he said, "you just want oatmeal cookies for breakfast." Duh.
Put it in a 350 degree oven and set the timer for 5 minutes. After five minutes, stir it up. You'll be stirring it up every two minutes after that. VERY IMPORTANT: After the first five minutes, just KEEP AN EYE ON IT. Because there's butter on it, it's like a cookie, IT CAN OVERCOOK AND BURN VERY QUICKLY! So keep an eye out, and the minute it starts to get a little brown around the edges after a couple turns, it's done.
You can see that there is only a slight color difference between the uncooked granola and the cooked granola. I don't like to completely toast it because then it's too crunchy. You want it to have a little of that toasted flavor but still have some moisture in the grains.
I'm partying with some sassy bloggers at:
The Shabby Nest Frugal Friday
My Repurposed Life Catch As Catch Can
504 Main Tickled Pink
Days of Chalk and Chocolate Friday Linky Party
Full Circle Creations All Star Block Party
Debbiedoo's Newbie Party
Ironstone Nest Tuesday Transformation
Our Delightful Home Show Me What You Got
Skip to My Lou Made By You Monday