May 24, 2011

Granola

Are you ever super annoyed when you push your cart down the cereal aisle and look at the prices?
It always seems to aggravate me. Probably because I have to buy 2,000 boxes at a time to feed this crowd of mine. (Not really, just a little over-exaggeration there.) Seriously though, I usually buy at least 10 boxes of cereal at a shot. Just because I hate having to go back to the cereal aisle anytime soon. Didn't you just read what I said? It gives me "grocery bill rage"....

I have tried to do the Supermom thang and make oatmeal, or pancakes, or waffles, or eggs and toast, or muffins, or rolls, or coffee cake instead of cereal. It makes me feel burned out quick. For one, I'm not a morning person, per say. And, honestly, I don't usually feel like doing a sprint to the kitchen in the morning so that I can beat all of the children down there and have some wonderful, warm breakfast waiting for them. Because, once I'm awake and moving around in the kitchen, those cute, cuddly, little ones of mine will wake up and instantly want something. Like breakfast.

So, I opt for cereal. Not every morning. I do try and mix it up a bit. But, especially in summer, it tends to be our quick, go-to breakfast. And, if you have a bunch of mouths to feed, it can become a big grocery expense.

My answer to that problem has been to make homemade granola. It's good. You can eat it with yogurt, or with milk, or as a snack.
It's inexpensive. I buy oatmeal in bulk at our grocery store, along with some of the other ingredients, and I make one big, huge batch. It tends to last longer than cereal does because I think it fills you up faster. And, I like to pretend that it's healthier. I don't really know if it is, but you can pretend along with me if you want to. And, if you don't want to pretend, please just don't tell me how terrible it might be. I like to escape reality every now and then.

The ingredient list is simple: oatmeal (I use instant because it's easier for the children to chew), dried bran or wheat germ, coconut, whole wheat flour, powdered milk, nuts, dried fruit, honey, oil, and a little brown sugar.
You mix all those ingredients together, spread it out on cookie sheets, and bake it in the oven for about 40 minutes. After it cools, it's ready to be stored. I keep mine in Tupperware containers or glass jars with a good seal, and it stays fresh for a long time.


There you have it! A great breakfast option for those of you on the run!

GRANOLA
4 cups oatmeal
1 cup dried bran or wheat germ
1 cup coconut
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup powdered milk
1 cup nuts (your choice)
dried fruit (your choice, however much you want)

Mix these ingredients together in a large pan.

In a saucepan, combine 1 cup honey, 1 cup oil, and 1/4 cup brown sugar. Heat just until combined. Pour over granola mixture. Spread this out onto cookie sheets and bake at 300 degrees for 40 minutes or until browned. Keep stirring, every 15 minutes so your granola doesn't burn!!!  When cool, store in a dry place.




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