Tag Archives: almonds

Easy Granola

Spur of the moment trips are always the best.  I was at work on Thursday when I decided to take advantage of the nice weather and take Friday off.  When I talked to my friend who lives close by, she said she was headed to Chicago over the weekend for a meeting.  “Take me with you!” I exclaimed.  Next thing I know, I booked a flight and jetted off to my favorite city for an impromptu weekend trip.  After I’d packed and was killing time before heading to the airport, I decided to make a quick snack that would not only be great for the flight but could easily be tossed in our bags as we roamed the Second City.  

Easy Granola is nutty, slightly sweet, slightly salty and well, easy!  Oats, almonds, sunflower seeds, and coconut are mixed together with syrup and a little canola oil and baked until golden brown.  Dried fruit added at the end provides a sweet, tart, and chewy delicious touch.  I used a combination of almonds and pecans since I had them on hand so feel free to use any combination of nuts like walnuts, macadamia, cashews, etc.  I also used less coconut since I only had sweetened coconut on hand and didn’t want this too sweet.  I used dried cherries but any dried fruit – cranberries, blueberries, apricots – would be delicious.  And lastly, I substituted blue agave syrup for the maple syrup since I had that on hand also.  This is such a versatile recipe that any combination of nuts, fruit and syrup with make this a delicious snack.  Keep this stored in an airtight container to eat as a snack or toss in with yogurt or over ice cream.  This kept us going all weekend!

The ingredients:

Combine all of the ingredients, except dried fruit, in a pan or bowl and toss until well combined.  (I didn’t read the directions correctly and added the dried fruit here.  It worked out okay but try to add the fruit at the end.)

Spread mixture onto a large baking sheet and bake in a 350° F oven for 25 minutes.

Toss the mixture once during baking so the edges don’t burn.

Add in the dried fruit and allow mixture to cool before storing in an airtight container.

Additions:  None

Omissions:  None

Substitutions:

  • Pecans and almonds
  • Blue agave syrup
  • Sunflower seeds

Overall Rating:  Like It

Source:  Real Simple Magazine

Moroccan-Spiced Oranges

I tend to eat fruit salads faster than I can gobble up whole fruit so when I had a bundle of oranges left in my fridge, I found this recipe for Moroccan-Spiced Oranges. Now, I’ll be honest, the “Moroccan-spiced” is nothing more than cinnamon. Cinnamon with oranges? Yep. Typically, you only think of cinnamon pairing well with apples but I’m here to tell you that cinnamon with oranges is pleasantly surprising. I don’t know what it is but something about the warmth of the cinnamon contrasting against the citrus of the oranges really tastes refreshing. Crunchy sliced almonds and silky chopped dates round out this salad which would be great as a dessert if you are trying to keep things light. Even if you aren’t sure about this recipe, grab the cinnamon next time you peel an orange. You just might like it.

The ingredients:

Combine orange wedges, slivered almonds, dates, powdered sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon in a bowl. Mix well.

Chill for 20 minutes. Serve alone or with yogurt or ice cream.

Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Like It

Source: Cooking Light Magazine

Fig, Applesauce, and Almond Breakfast Loaf

Rumor has it that my mom craved Fig Newtons when she was pregnant with me and to this day, it is one of my favorite cookies EVER.  But I can honestly say I’d never in my life purchased figs before, dried or fresh.  Come to think of it, I don’t think I’d even tasted a fig except for those newtons (at least not that I remember).  Something about those wrinkled, odd looking fruits intimidates me.  So when I came across this Fig, Applesauce, and Almond Breakfast Loaf, I thought I’d give them a try.  And I can now say I’m intimidated no more!  The figs in this bread are sweet and chewy and the almond extract give this bread such a comforting aroma that I just want to curl up on the couch with a warm buttered slice or two, a nice cup of coffee and a good book.  Yum!

Additions:  None

Omissions:  None

Substitutions:  None

Overall Rating:  Love It

Source:  Cooking Light Magazine

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