Peanut Butter Granola

Sometimes, things just don’t go the way you plan. In life, or in the kitchen. Let’s just talk about the kitchen.

I went to the grocery store to buy Brussels sprouts. I wanted to try my hand at roasting them to see if they are as great as people seem to think they are. The grocery store didn’t have Brussels sprouts. I looked high and low. No Brussels sprouts.

I talked myself out of buying consolation chocolate chips. I know myself well. 20% of the chips will be used in baking, and 80% will be eaten straight out of the bag. Not the point.

I decided to make granola bars instead. I found a recipe for no-bake bars, and gave it a shot! I made semi-educated substitutions, based on what was in my cupboard and what google told me I could do. And the bars wouldn’t hold together. Granola bar crumble is what I had when I tried to cut my beautiful, innocent granola bars.

Fortunately, crumbly granola bars look a lot like granola. After throwing my no-bake non-bars in the oven, I had a yummy granola on my hands. Perfect for summer breakfast bowls. Fruit+yogurt+granola=summer. Fact.

Peanut Butter Granola

Dry ingredients:

  • 2 cup oats
  • 1 cup cereal (crushed chex or rice crispies work well)
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/8 cup ground flax seed
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ

Wet ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/8 cup molasses

1. Preheat oven to 280 degrees

2. Combine dry ingredients in one bowl and wet ingredients in another.

3. Thoroughly combine wet and dry ingredients.

4. Pour on a cookie sheet, and bake for 20-22 minutes, mixing periodically.

I wanna know: What’s your favorite summer breakfast?

Granola Bars

My life is so full. And I’m so happy.

I was reading an article in one of my roommate’s magazines tonight. The author pointed out that we often remember the happy times that we’ve had and we look forward to the happy times that are to come, but we forget to notice the happy times that are in this moment. And I don’t want them to go unnoticed. Because my life contains so much activity and so many people that bring me so much joy. Why shouldn’t I celebrate that?

I spent a solid 4 days last week surrounded by views like this:

and this:

Since New Years, I’ve been teaching piano lessons to 6 wonderful kids. And loving it. I even got some Valentine’s happiness from one of them today. Cute, isn’t it? I definitely needed sugar to adorn my desk and tempt me.

And tonight, I have the night off. And I’m home. It’s been awhile since those two phenomena have collided. So I’m unpacking and doing laundry. I did the dishes. I made dinner (leftover stirfry+chicken broth=great soup!) I made granola bars.

It’s all in the small things. I’m convinced.

These granola bars–so easy. I will never buy from the store again. I used this recipe as a starting point, and ended up with this!

You’ll need:

  • 2.5 cups oats
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds (or other)
  • 2 tbs. butter
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. all-spice
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In an 8×8 dish, mix together 2.5 cups of oats, 1/2 cup of wheat germ, and 1/2 cup of seeds (I used sunflower). Toast in the oven for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While that’s going, combine the remaining ingredients in a sauce pan and heat until butter is melted and brown sugar is dissolved.

Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees. Mix dry and liquid ingredients together in another bowl. Grease your 8×8 pan, and spread the granola mix into it, pressing down with the back of a spoon.

Bake for 23 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting. Store in an air-tight container.

I wanna know: What/who in your life has been bringing you happiness recently?

Easy Peanut Granola

In order to combat a busy week, this recipe is always a good option. It makes for a quick breakfast/snack.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped peanuts
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Lightly grease a baking sheet.
  2. In a large bowl, combine oats, peanuts, and wheat germ.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine honey, brown sugar, vegetable oil, water, salt, and vanilla. Stir well; then pour into the oat mixture, and stir. Spread out on a cookie sheet.
  4. Bake for 1 hour, flipping every 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and cool before serving.