Gingerbread Granola

As I stated in the blog entry about the ginger snaps, I’ve really been loving the flavors of gingerbread this holiday season.  So when I decided to make some granola to give to friends and family members, I decided a gingerbread flavored granola sounded yummy!

While to base of the granola was baking in the oven, I was on the phone with my mom.  I asked her what add ins I could use that would be yummy with the gingerbread flavor.  It was decided that pecans or walnuts would be yummy and cranberries or even raisins would also be yummy!  I ended up putting pecans and cranberries.  You could even put chocolate chips for a chocolate gingerbread flavor.

Gingerbread Granola

Gingerbread Granola

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 c. oatmeal (I used quick oats.)
  • 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of cloves
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 2 Tbsp. molasses (Spray measuring spoon with cooking spray before measuring.)
  • 1/4 c. honey (Spray measuring cup with cooking spray before measuring.)
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1/4  – 1/2 c. raisins or dried cranberries (I used cranberries.)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 c. chopped walnuts or pecans (I used pecans.)
  • Optional:  1/4 c. chocolate chips

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  2. In a medium measuring bowl, combine oatmeal and spices.
  3. In a small bowl, place coconut oil.  Melt in microwave for 1 minute.
  4. Add the molasses and honey to the coconut oil.
  5. Pour over the oatmeal and spices.  Stir until all of the oatmeal is combined.
  6. Place on cooking sheet in a thin layer.
  7. Bake for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and stir.  Place back into oven.
  8. Bake for an additional 8 minutes.  Take out of the oven.
  9. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before adding the raisins or cranberries and nuts.
  10. Store in an airtight container.
  11. Enjoy with yogurt or milk!

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Individual Five Spice Apple Crisp

Last November my foodie pen pal introduced me to Chinese five spice and suggested I use it in some of my fall time recipes instead of pumpkin pie spice blend.  The five spice really does take it up a notch.  If you didn’t know, Chinese five spice is a spice blend of cinnamon, star anise, white pepper, cloves, and fennel.  It’s primarily used in Chinese cooking but is found in other cuisines.

With fall around the corner and the pumpkin spice latte already at Starbucks, it’s time to start my favorite flavor season.  I love fall flavors!  Apples, cranberries, and pumpkins, oh my goodness deliciousness.  Cinnamon is my favorite spice.  So if asked, my favorite seasons are the transition seasons – fall for it’s bold flavors and spring for it’s beauty.

I got some apples from one of our local produce stands so I decided to make myself an apple crisp.  Since the boys do not eat apple crisp, I decided to make myself my own individual apple crisp.  Instead of using cinnamon, I used the Chinese Five Spice.

Individual Five Spice Apple Crisp

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Before cooking the crisp

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Before cooking the crisp

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 c. glass dish
  • 1 med. apple seeded and diced (peeled if you want to)
  • 2 tsp. Chinese Five Spice (1 tsp. and 1 tsp.)
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. quick cooking oats
  • 1/2 Tbsp. butter, cut into fourths or halves
  • Optional:  2 Tbsp. pecan or walnuts for topping

Steps:

  1. Spray your glass dish with cooking spray.
  2. Add the apples to the dish.  Sprinkle the apples with 1 tsp. of  Chinese five spice.
  3. In another dish, mix the oats, brown sugar, and the other tsp. of Chinese five spice.
  4. Evenly distribute the oat mixture over the apples.
  5. If you are using nuts on the top, sprinkle those on top of the oat mixture.
  6. Place the pats of butter over the oat mixture.
  7. Microwave for 2.5 to 3 minutes.  Careful it will be hot.
  8. Top with ice cream or whipped cream if desired.
  9. Enjoy!

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White chocolate granola

I’ve mentioned how much I like a local Farmer’s Market called Second Street Market. One of the vendors has a delicious granola called Triple Treat Granola. It contains walnuts, cranberries, and melted white chocolate. I sent a container to my May and one to my June foodie pen pals. Both of them loved the granola:).

I’ve decided to recreate the granola and add another flavor element – coconut. It turned out delicious.

White Chocolate Granola
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Adapted from Finding Joy in my Kitchen

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 c. Water
  • 3/4 c. Brown sugar
  • 5 c. Old fashioned oatmeal
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon (add more or less depending on your likes or leave it out)
  • 1/4 c. Chopped walnuts
  • 1 and 1/2 c. White chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. Dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c. Dried sweetened coconut

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a big saucepan, combine water, olive oil, and brown sugar. Let simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the oatmeal and cinnamon.
  4. Slowly add the oatmeal mixture to the saucepan. Stir each time you add some of the oatmeal. Make sure the water, olive oil, and brown sugar is evenly coated on the oatmeal.  Take it off the heat.
  5. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet.
  6. Place in preheated oven. Bake for 5 minutes.
  7. Take out of oven and stir.
  8. Add walnuts to the granola. Place back in oven.
  9. Bake for 5 more minutes.
  10. Take out of oven and sprinkle with a cup of the white chocolate chips.
  11. Put back in oven for a minutes.
  12. Take out of oven and stir the granola so the melted white chocolate gets all over the granola.
  13. Allow to cool and then add the remaining white chocolate chips, cranberries, and coconut.
  14. Store in an air tight container.
  15. Enjoy over yogurt, froyo, or by itself.

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