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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Crunchy Pumpkin Spice Granola

My daddy likes granola and I found this recipe and thought I would try it and surprise him with it this past weekend.  Normally I am not a fan of granola because it is so hard, but this was pretty good, especially when it was warm. This recipe allowed me to try some ingredients I had not used before.  Always looking for new things to try.
I know it looks like a lot of stuff.  Yes that is coconut oil in front.  That was a first for me.
In a large bowl add 3 3/4 cups old fashioned rolled oats.
2/3 cup pumpkin seeds.  The recipe also calls for unsweetened coconut but I could not find any.  If I had gone to a health food store I probably could.  I didn't want to use the sweetened because I was afraid it would burn.
1/4 cup uncooked quinoa.  I tasted the quinoa to see what it tasted like uncooked.  It had a nutty flavor so it was a good addition.  Of course I had these little beads all over my kitchen.
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspoon salt.
Mix all together.
A little hint here.  These round oat containers are really good for wrapping Christmas presents in.  Will drive people crazy trying to figure out what is inside.
In another bowl add 2 egg whites.
Whisk the egg whites for about a minute until they are frothy.
Add 1/2 cup pumpkin puree.
1/3 cup pure maple syrup.

Here is the coconut oil.  This oil is suppose to be really good for you too.  It is a solid, so you will need to melt it but not burn it.  I scrapped out 1/4 cup.
Put it in the measuring cup, and melted it in the microwave for about 20 seconds at a time until it melts. When it cools a little bit pour it in the pumpkin mixture.
Add 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Whisk that all together well.
Add to the oat mixture.
Mix well.
Take two cookie sheets and line them with parchment paper.  Then divide the oats between the two sheets.  Spread out pretty well.
The second sheet.  Place the sheets in a preheated 325 oven.  Bake for 40 minutes.  Stir every 15 minutes.  I used one oven and rotated the pans when I stirred them as well.
After one of the stirrings.
Finished product fresh from the oven.  Let cool a little bit.  The recipe suggested leaving it on the sheets for 20 minutes.
Measure out 2/3 cup dried cranberries.
I put it back in the bowl and added the cranberries so that I could mix well.
Then store in an airtight container.

Crunchy Pumpkin Spice Granola Recipe

3 3/4 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2/3 cup unsweetened coconut**
2/3 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup uncooked quinoa
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven 325. Bake 40 minutes.  Stirring every 15minutes.

This recipe has some decisions too.
You can leave the unsweetened coconut out.
You can change dried cranberries to some other dried fruit.
You can change the pumpkin seeds to another nut.
You can add chocolate chips, white chocolate chips or butterscotch chips.
You can use honey, agave, or brown rice syrup instead of maple syrup
You can use vegetable oil instead of coconut oil
You can leave the quinoa out.
You can add 2 Tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder to the wet ingredients for chocolate pumpkin granola

** Today I found unsweetened coconut at Fresh Market.  So if you want to include it you can find it there.


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Sky High Blackberry Apple Muffins

Well I love blackberries and apples but had never thought of putting those two flavors together.  These muffins though are a perfect combination of these two flavors.  The strudel topping really adds to it as well.
Don't be turned off by all these ingredients, They really are pretty easy to make.
This recipe has several choices you can make.  This is the first one.  You can add 3 cups whole wheat flour, or 3 cups plain flour, or 1 1/2 cups of each.  That is the choice I made.  I started with 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour.
Add 1 1/2 cup plain flour
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon.  You can use 2 teaspoons if you want a lighter cinnamon flavor.
3 1/2 teaspoon baking powder.  That is correct there is a lot of baking powder.
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Peel, core, and chop 1 very large apple into small pieces. Add to the flour mixture.
In a second bowl add 1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup Chobani Apple Cinnamon yogurt.  That is all of one of the small containers.  You can use a different flavor of yogurt if you like.
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce or you can substitute vegetable oil.
1/4 cup pure maple syrup or you can add 1/4 cup more brown sugar.
2 large eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup milk or unsweetened almond milk. Mix all the liquid ingredients well.
Now add the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients.
Mix well.
In another bowl add 3 Tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 Tablespoon old fashioned rolled oats.  Toss well.
1 cup fresh or frozen blackberries.
Chop the blackberries well.
In a sprayed muffin tin add a little of the muffin mixture on the bottom.
Sprinkle some blackberry pieces on top of the muffin mixture.  Don't mix because you don't wan the mixture to turn purple.
Some blackberries on top of each.
Put more batter on top.  Go ahead and fill to the top.
Sprinkle some more blackberries on top.
Now sprinkle some of the topping on top. Place in a preheated 425 oven for 5 minutes, then turn the oven down to 375.  Bake for 15-16 minutes.
I had enough batter left to make one tray of mini muffins too.  These came out first.
The muffins fresh from the oven.  They can also be frozen.

Sky High Blackberry Apple Muffins Recipe

3 cups flour  can be whole wheat or plain or a combination of the two
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 very large apple peeled and diced
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup Chobani Apple Cinnamon yogurt
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 large eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup milk
1 cup fresh or frozen blackberries

Preheat oven to 425 bake for 5 minutes then lower temp to 375 and bake for 15-16 minutes.