{sms} cherry almond granola

Good stuff. I make granola all the time. In fact, I’ve made Sweet Melissa’s Cherry Almond Granola once before. It was used in the 4th recipe baked for Sweet Melissa’s SundaysGranola Breakfast Cookies–way back in April 2009. It’s kinda weird because you can see I’m wearing my wedding rings. Weird. It was a previous life.

Another difference between then and now is that this week I’m hosting the recipe. Oh, and this time I didn’t drop my granola container and waste most of the batch. 😉

Granola is great because you do anything with it. You can use it in cookies and bread. You can eat as cereal. You can eat it with yogurt and fruit. And, of course, it’s great on double-bean vanilla ice cream.

Cherry Almond Granola

From The Sweet Melissa Baking Book

Makes 4 quarts granola

    • 5 cups rolled oats
    • 3 cups rye flakes (see note)
    • 1 cup unsalted shelled sunflower seeds
    • 1 cup roasted shelled pumpkin seeds
    • 1 cup whole natural almonds
    • 1/2 cup dry milk powder
    • 1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
    • 3/4 cup clover honey
    • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1 cup dried currants
    • 1 cup dried cherries
    • 1 cup golden raisins

    Before You Start

    Position a rack in the bottom and top thirds of your oven. Preheat the oven to 250° F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

    1. In a very large bowl, combine the oats, rye flakes, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, almonds, and dry milk powder.
    2. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, whisk together the oil, honey, maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, and ginger and bring to a simmer, 3 to 4 minutes.
    3. Pour hot mixture over the oat mixture, and mix well to combine.
    4. Divide the granola equally between the prepared cookie sheets, spreading it evenly into a single layer. Bake for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring every 15 minutes, until golden. Remove to a wire rack and cool completely.
    5. Break up the granola into a bowl. Add the currants, cherries, and raisins and mix thoroughly.

    The granola keeps in an airtight container at room temperature and in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

    Note: Rye flakes are similar to rolled oats and can be used in much the same way. You can find them at natural foods stores.

    {sms} almond honey madeleines

    I am without a computer and internet access right now. Thank god I have an iPhone. I made last week’s chocolate macaroons and didn’t post or take pictures. I didn’t want to repeat that this week.

    My mother has a weakness for madeleines, so made them for her. Instead of hazelnuts I used almonds. Also, I used the honey I had on hand.

    Although these were tasty, they seemed a bit greaser than other recipes.

    This is this week’s Sweet Melissa recipe hosted by Debbie of Café Chibita.

    {twd} Nancy’s Pick!

    Ack! Weekends have been full with yard work, junk-clearing (no, I really don’t need my college textbooks), and social obligations that I haven’t had much time to bake.  However, there was no way I was going to miss this week’s Tuesdays With Dorie.

    You see, this week, the host is Nancy of The Dog Eats the Crumbs. Nancy is awesome. She’s been a great blogging friend and I’ve had tons of fun baking along with her via Twitter.

    And Nancy selected an awesome recipe: Swedish Visiting Cake. When I first paged through Baking…From My Home to Yours, the cake intrigued me.  Traditionally, it’s baked in a cast-iron pan and it’s a very simple/easy almond-vanilla cake to make.  Really, it is so easy and it was a big hit with the family–there is no reason why I won’t make it again.

    Thanks, Nancy! A great pick! For the recipe, visit her blog or buy the book.

    {sms} sweet almond bread pudding with raspberry sauce

    IMGP7241

    And brioche! I got it in my head to bake the brioche for this week’s Sweet Melissa Sundays selection, Sweet Almond Bread Pudding with Raspberry Sauce.

    petite brioche sans tete

    I’ve made brioche before, both the one from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking…From My Home to Yours and from Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice. This time I decided to try the brioche recipe from Elisabeth Prueitt’s Tartine. As Tartine recipes tend to go, it was a fussy recipe requiring a pre-ferment, both freezer & refrigerator time, and washing lots of dishes. And as Tartine recipes tend to go, it was the best recipe I’ve made. The crumb was unbelievable and the bread was gorgeous. I made the full recipe which yielded 2 loaves and 12 petite brioche sans tête (didn’t feel like adding the têtes).

    brioche loaf

    In the introduction to the recipe Elisabeth Prueitt suggests using slices of brioche for tartines, French open-faced sandwiches. I thought that was a swell idea and made one using leftover toppings from my pizza party. It’s a 4-Cheese tartine with sun-dried tomatoes and red onions.  Most of the brioche is residing in my freezer for French toast emergencies.

    tartine

    I only made a 1/4 of the Sweet Melissa recipe because I’m not a fan of bread pudding. I made 1/2 of the raspberry sauce because it will be great on ice cream. Thank you to Candace of Candy Girl for hosting this week. If you would like the recipe, visit her blog or buy the book–Melissa Murphy’s The Sweet Melissa Baking Book.

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    After a long hiatus, I’ve remembered to submit this to Yeastspotting!

    Cherry Almond Granola

    parfait-2

    I’ve been making my own granola for quite awhile now and don’t buy premade cereal. I’m always trying new recipes. My favorite breakfast is a yogurt parfait with fruit and granola. The rep from Stonyfield Yogurt sent me coupons to try Oikos Greek Yogurt, which I did for this parfait. I prefer full-fat yogurt and Oikos is non-fat so it was not as thick as I prefer and the taste seemed off, but is typical of nonfat milk items. It comes in plain which is wonderful because I only buy plain yogurt.

    This week’s Sweet Melissa Sundays recipe is the Breakfast Granola Cookies which I will blog about on Sunday. It came at a perfect time because I just ran out of my previous granola.

    parfait

    This is a tasty recipe which includes not only rolled oats, but rye flakes (except I couldn’t find rye flakes and used Bob’s Red Mill 5-grain mix which included rye flakes and flax seeds). There are also sunflower seeds, pepitas, currants,  in addition to the dried cherries and almonds. The recipe also calls for milk powder and honey. To make the recipe vegan so I can eat it on my vegan days, I used soy milk powder and agave syrup instead.

    This recipe makes a lot of granola, more than my granola container holds–so I packed some up and gave some to friends. But then disaster struck–I dropped my granola container (which broke) and spilled most of the granola all over  my kitchen floor. Luckily, approximately 2 cups stayed safe in the container. So now I need to make more granola…what recipe should I try next?

    cherry-almond-granola