January 1, 2014

Nutty Grain and Oat Granola

Nutty Grain and Oat Granola
Nutty Grain and Oat Granola



It's January in West Virginia. December was warmer than usual, we had a few days that were in the upper 70's. However, now it's January and the weather is going back to normal. When I first moved here I had experienced very few winter days that got below 20 degrees. Seattle gets snow and cooler weather, but not cold weather. The first winter I was here and it hit 5 degree with wind I froze. It only got worse when my oldest started school. Standing at the bus in 5 degree weather with two kids is horrible. There is no way to stay warm in that weather, even in layers. So for at least the next 2 1/2 months my heat will be blasting and I will be in sweaters and wool socks. I don't do winter, I can do 100 degree days in the summer much easier. Plus I cringe when I see my gas bills, heating a house in cold weather can be brutal on the checkbook. Maybe it would be easier if I was a bear and just went to bed for the entire winter. I would wake up warm and refreshed with no cold weather in sight.

I have been trying to keep healthier snacks around the house for my boys. If given the option they will grab a bowl of sugary cereal before anything else. While cereal is okay occasionally, my husband's idea of an entire box a day doesn't work for my mindset. This week I tried a new recipe for Nutty Grain and Oat Bars from the January 2014 issue of Bon Appetit Magazine.
Marshall Plane Crash Memorial Spring Hill Cemetery Huntington, WV
Marshall Plane Crash Memorial Spring Hill Cemetery Huntington, WV

This recipe has 9 ingredients. It takes 60 minutes of total time, 10 minutes of which is active and makes 16 servings. I did make a number of changes to the original recipe. First instead of amaranth I substituted sesame seeds. For the nuts I used almonds and increased the dates to 8 since mine were small. After making the bars and letting them cool they feel apart. I made sure to follow the recipe exactly and pack down the bars, but they still feel apart when cut. I decided to crumble the bars and add a small amount of honey and put them back in the oven for 15 minutes in order to make granola. After cooling I broke the pieces into granola size pieces.
Huntington, WV from Spring Hill Cemetery 

As bars this recipe didn't work out very well. When made into granola this recipe was perfect. My husband and I really liked the sweetness and taste from the dates and the granola made for a great afternoon snack. With the changes that I made to the original recipe this granola turned out well. A nice afternoon snack or breakfast served over Greek yogurt.

For the recipe go to Nutty Grain and Oat Bars.
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