Friday, August 12, 2011

Super Easy Homemade Foods

This week I've been doing plenty of cooking.  I think I was inspired by the prospect of school starting for the boys next week and knowing that they eat MASSIVE amounts of food especially at breakfast.  Because I'm cheap frugal I refuse to spend half of Jaime's paycheck on pre-made foods that I can easily make at home.  Seriously, $6 for about 2 cups of GF granola!? Crazy!  Anyway, I'd been promising John Paul that I'd make him some granola and when I saw Whole Foods had the GF oats on sale this week I grabbed a couple of bags.  I also make non-GF granola for myself, Jaime, and Alexander, but this was a special batch.  The breakfast foods made this week along with the granola, were almond butter and chocolate almond butter, and gluten free and dairy free blueberry muffins. 
So, first up is the Gluten free Dairy free Granola:

What I like about cooking is that you can substitute ingredients.  These are what I used, but change it up for your needs and flavor likings.
about 3 cups GF slow cook oats
couple of handfuls of chopped walnuts (use any nuts or seeds or none at all)
sunflower seeds
couple pinches of salt
several shakes of cinnamon
a few dashes of cloves
oh about 1/4 to a 1/3 of a cup of molasses
somewhere around a 1/3 cup of honey (can use agave or brown sugar as a sweetener too or instead of)
a few tablespoons or so of butter of some sort (this time I used some coconut butter that Jaime bought a while back when it was on sale)
vanilla extract (optional and can sub almond or orange extract)
Because I do all of the dish washing here, I like to use as few dishes as possible and keep a pretty clean kitchen as I go along.  Keeping that in mind, you can use as many dishes, pots, pans, and spoons as you wish. :)
Heat oven to 400.
First pour the oats on to a baking sheet (or you could use a 9x13 probably) then add the nuts and seeds and salt. 

Because the walnuts are fairly soft and I don't want to spend my day standing and doing dishes, I just somewhat crush them in my hands. 
In a glass dish (or if you want to use your stove top, use a pot) combine some butter--a few tablespoons I suppose--some honey, molasses, cinnamon, and cloves.  Then melt in the microwave or in your pot.  FYI--this coconut butter melts SUPER FAST!
It looks kinda gross up there, but I just pulled the melted mixture from the microwave and didn't stir it yet.
Take this sweetened mixture and pour it over the oats, nuts, and seeds.
Mix it all together so that the oats are coated.
Is it becoming painfully obvious that I really need to take some photo lessons from here or here?!
Then stick your pan in the oven for about 30-40 minutes, stirring once or twice during cooking.  Let cool completely before storing in a container in the pantry.
You noticed that there isn't any fruit in here.... Well, I like to mix things up a bit and my 2 GF eaters can't agree on what they both like.  So, when I serve granola I also add some sort of fruit, usually dried, to it as well.  You can add fresh fruit too.  They also like to add their GF crispy rice to the granola and pour almond milk over the top or eat it with dairy free yogurt.
The almond butters and muffins will come later today hopefully :)

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