Breakfast Obsession

I'm obsessed with breakfast.  It's definitely not a meal I'd be likely to skip.  In fact, I'm not likely to skip any meals. Is it because food is constantly on my mind?  I do admit to thinking about dinner while having my ristretto in the morning.  And yes, I do sometimes fall asleep with a cookbook on my nose. Or worse, wake up in the middle of the night thinking about a new recipe.
Alas, my friends.  My obsession with breakfast has a little to do with my love affair with food and everything to do with the 'health nut'  side of me.  A health nut who eats butter and cream?  Sure! Better than pre-packaged foods and ingredients with numbers. But let me not digress.
I really believe your metabolism needs a good kick in the butt first thing in the morning.  Plus, I don't think I could think clearly on an empty stomach.  Therefore, I make sure to start every day properly.  Sometimes it's some French yogurt with a little honey or jam.  Other times a bowl of oatmeal or some rye crackers.  Weekends of course are more luxurious, and naughty.  Eggs, croissants or your typical French breakfast of toasted baguette with jam and a huge bowl of coffee.
Here's a recipe that fits the bill any morning.  Serve it the healthy way (with a little yogurt and fruit) or the naughty way (throw a few handfuls into your muffin mix).  It's something you'll always want to have around the house. Just be careful.  You might find yourself eating this stuff for dinner...

Paola's Delicious Granola
Makes about 1 liter
500g oats
120g walnuts, roughly chopped
175g mixed nuts, roughly chopped
100g shredded coconut
2tsps ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp salt
125ml honey
225g unsweetened applesauce
100g dark brown sugar
50g sunflower oil
2tsps vanilla extract
200g dried fruits of your choice

Preheat oven to 180C.
In a large bowl, mix the oats, walnuts, mixed nuts, coconut, cinnamon, ginger and salt.
In another bowl, whisk the honey, applesauce, sugar, oil and vanilla extract.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well.
Cover a baking sheet with baking paper and spread half of the mix on the sheet.  Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every ten minutes to make sure everything is evenly browned.  Keep an eye on the granola for the last ten minutes to make sure it doesn't brown too much.
Allow the granola to cool on the baking sheet (on a rack) for about 10 minutes.  Transfer to a jar, add half of the dried fruit and stir well.
Do the same with the other half of the granola.
The granola keeps for a few weeks in an air-tight container.

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