Thursday, July 28, 2011

Granola - A nutritious healthy breakfast

Granola is a nutritious healthy breakfast and a home made granola is even better since it is not loaded with sugar.  Off late one of the topics of argument between my husband and me is 'breakfast' - What do we eat for breakfast.

 His point is that idly and dosa have nothing in them and it is just carbohydrates and we should be having cereal for breakfast. On my defence, I say, breakfast is the most important meal and we do need carbohydrates to take us through the day, especially for growing children. We use par boiled rice and urad dal.  We supplement the lack of protein and vitamin in the side dish such as sambar. After all, idly is the first food we introduce to babies since it is easy on the stomach.

Cereal is a recent entrant in our lives. Does that mean what we were eating all these years is not correct? Were our  parents, grandparents, and great grand parents and the generations before that not eating a nutritious meal?

These days I give my son cereal twice a day. So what is the connection between this write up and granola? Yes, searching for a healthy, well balanced breakfast, I landed up on granola. I have had the store bought granola bars in the past and not liked them much. I am glad I tried making it at home. I searched the internet on how to make granola and realized that there is no hard and fast rule on how it needs to be done. I made it with what was available in my pantry at that time. I also love the fact that we can customize it to our taste and keep trying different combinations each time.

Does this mean we are going to have granola everyday? Nope. But it is definitely good to have once in a while.

*Try using honey instead of maple syrup
* Throw in dried blueberries, flax seeds or even cashews

Dry Ingredients
Rolled oats - 2 cups
Corn flakes - 1 cup
salt  - 1/2 tsp
Ground Cinnamon - 1 tsp
White sesame seeds - 1/4 cup
Chopped walnuts  - 1 cup
Chopped almonds - 1/ 2 cup
Dried cranberries - 1/2 cup
raisins - 1/2 cup

Wet Ingredients
Maple Syrup - 1/2 cup
Oil - 4 TBSP
vanilla essence - 1 tsp


*Pre heat oven to 300 F.
*Cover a baking sheet with foil and lightly grease.
*Combine the dry ingredients except cranberries and raisins
* Combine the wet ingredients
* Pour the wet ingredients on the dry ingredients and mix well. Ensure that the dry ingredients are coated well with the maple syrup mixture.
* Spread the mixture on the baking sheet in a thin layer.
* Bake for 45 mts - 1 hr depending on the oven.
* Take it out of the oven and add cranberries and raisins.
* Allow it to cool and store in air-tight containers.

Notes: Rotate the tray in between to ensure even baking.
You can add the cranberries and raisins and then bake. I was worried they would become hard and hence added them later.

Enjoy a healthy breakfast:)

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