Saturday, February 9, 2013

Granola nation

While my favorite thing to eat for breakfast remains good toast with avocado and salt, it's not always an option. There's a certain type of bread I like best--La Boulange's multigrain levain--and while we buy a quarter loaf on the weekends, that only lasts a couple of days. Anyway, I also have the feeling I'm not supposed to eat bread every day for breakfast. So, I force myself to eat yogurt.

While yogurt overall sickens me, I can tolerate Greek yogurt reasonably well and now that I've learned to make granola, I will go so far as to say I sort of almost like it. But this has everything to do with how delicious the granola is and how well it masks the sour gloppiness of the yogurt.

I started making this granola around the end of last year and now I make a batch a week. The husband is completely obsessed with it and brings a big container to work each Monday.  I work my way through the remainder.

The secret to this granola is that it calls for whipping an egg white to break it down, then tossing it with the rest of the ingredients. It results in a lovely, clumpy, not too sweet granola that I just adore.

I've modified the original recipe, which you may find here (strangely, couldn't find it on the Smitten Kitchen website--I got it from her book). I use honey instead of maple, almonds instead of walnuts, reduce the coconut by half, and skip toasting the wheatgerm. I also leave the fruit out of the husband's portion and add it to my own, favoring chopped dried apricots or cranberries.

As Deb Perelman says, once you've made your own granola, you'll never go back to the store-bought junk. It is so simple and so much better. Everyone should make this granola! Everyone!

The granola does bake for the full 55 minutes in my oven. I like to get it nice and dark golden brown, makes it taste better and more fun to break up.


  1. the best part of a batch of granola for me is the dried fruit and nuts mixed in, and you appear to have included the proper portion and selection of those things. i approve. :)

  2. I am a huge fan of homemade granola. Gonna have to whip up a batch of my own now.

  3. I have had an inkling recently to make granola. What I am afraid of is exactly what you wrote....I make it homemade and then the store stuff cannot compare. I typically eat granola and yogurt (greek too-full fat) as a snack during the day. I eat toast and cheese every single day for breakfast (smile).

    I hav Smitten Kitchen's new cookbook. I think I need to take a look at the granola recipe.

    Hope everything is going well.


  4. I have never been able to stand store-bought muesli or granola, it always tastes vaguely stale to me. But I don't make granola as often as I should (too lazy). This version sounds great, I can see how the egg white would help, I like to make egg white coated spiced nuts to snack on.

    Btw, I used to eat peanut butter on toast with a cup of tea on the side every single day for a while! Luckily I actually like greek yoghurt, so now I do rolled oats with yoghurt and fruit instead :)

    Have a great week.

  5. grace: glad you approve! :)

    camille: hope you do (between batched of eclairs...)

    Velva: The recipe is so simple, you won't feel it's all that much harder than buying it. There's no chopping. The main investment is the hour it takes to bake.

    shaz: Now I want those nuts.

  6. I like to top my yogurt with granola too. But whenever I hear people talk about how they make it at home, it just sounds like so much work. But now that good granola is so expensive, maybe I might break down and make my own.

  7. Ben-Well, give it a try if you feel inspired. It really is simple--no chopping or doing anything on the stove. Just measure out the ingredients, mix em up and bake em!

  8. Have never made granola, but now want to try. And for your yogurt aversion, I recommend trying lebne, a middle eastern yogurt dish. You just strain yogurt by sitting it on a cheesecloth until most of the liquid dries, then pour on some olive oil and oregano and eat with pita chips. It's delicious.