Wouldn’t you agree that there are certain foods out there in this incredible world that simply have an inherent quality of goodness about them? I mean, just the thought of them, they carry with them some sense of wholesomeness, comfort, etc. Foods you want to wrap up in, like a favourite sweater on a cool summer evening.
Now, I’m not sure if this is related to my advancing pregnant state, or that summer has finally arrived and so the seasonal mood has shifted again, but my life certainly seems to revolve around my list of goodness-comfort-foods these days. And it may not be too surprising that most of the foods on my little list are things that either come from 1) the garden or 2) the oven. Of course, the most charming and joy-inducing foods are ones that combine the two elements (Knock-Your-Socks-Off Rhubarb Crumble!), providing the perfect chain of experience from Garden>Oven>Mouth.
But there is one of these goodness-foods, regardless of season or variation of the recipe, that always seems to bring a touch of homemade pleasure into my family’s days. From the act of preparation (totally child friendly), the attending as it bakes (mama’s job), the smell that just fills a house (dad’s favourite to come home to), making it in a large batch means it’s the ultimate food that will last for days. What is that wonderful food? Granola!
I know I’ve shared a recipe for granola on my blog before, but after years of making I managed to tune it into a lovely little recipe that is now my (our!) favourite. And what I love most about baking anything- the act of sharing makes it even better. So here for you all to try (and modify as you see fit), Strathcona Granola!
This sizable batch will last at about a week of everyday eating. And with fresh berries and yogurt, it is officially one of Finn’s favourite breakfasts these days. “NOLA!”
In a large bowl, mix together:
6 cups whole oats
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 – 2 cups chopped walnuts
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup dried cranberries
In a small pan over low/med heat, mix together:
2/3 cups honey
2/3 cup oil- safflower, sunflower, or even canola in a pinch
Mix together until honey is melted, then add to the honey/oil:
3 tsp vanilla
Add wet to dry, stirring well to coat everything.
Preheat oven to 225*F. Pour mixture evenly out over 2 cookie sheets, and bake for approx 1 hour, taking mixture out to stir well every 15-20 minutes. After an hour, take out of oven, and allow to cool entirely before placing in a well sealed container. Eat!
Enjoy, and feel free to share some of your own- what are your favourite goodness foods?