Americans always have funny names for things don’t they? Biscuits are “cookies”, soft drink is “soda” and lollies are “candy”! I soon learned that what the Americans call “granola” is what we Aussies call “toasted muesli”! Well, wherever you’re from and whatever you call it, we can all agree that granola tastes amazing!
I have to admit, granola is not something I generally eat because the store-bought stuff is usually super high in sugar and fat and let’s face it, I eat enough sugar and fat in one day so I don’t need any extra at breakfast. But I love the stuff! I’m a big fan of anything crispy, crunchy, cereal-y and nutty. Luckily, I came across a post on Pinterest of gingerbread flavoured granola and I knew I had to try it! Everything ginger reminds me of being a kid and visiting my favourite Auntie and Uncle who would always have a container of Arnotts biscuits waiting for us when we arrived – my choice was of course Gingernuts! I also love chocolate-covered ginger, ginger cake and I always make gingerbread for Christmas. So I was very excited to add one of my favourite spices to a long-lost breakfast love!
As this was my first time making granola, I wasn’t sure of exact measurements and wasn’t fussed with making it super healthy. Consequently, I just threw everything in a bowl and made use of whatever ingredients I had to make this batch. Next time I will probably substitute the golden syrup with rice malt syrup or honey and add a variety of different nuts, this is just what I had on hand. Feel free to use whatever you like! And if you like ginger as much as me, you may want to add more spices to this recipe (including more ginger and mixed spice) as mine didn’t come out quite as spicy as I would have liked!
Anyway, have fun making this granola or any version you like with added dried fruit, peanut butter or shaved coconut. The possibilities are endless! I plan to enjoy this for breakfast with greek yoghurt and some baked peaches 🙂
Gingerbread Granola (makes about 4 cups)
2 cups rolled oats
2 cups mixed nuts (I used pecans and walnuts)
1/3 cup golden syrup
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
Mix all ingredients in a bowl and spread on a baking tray lined with non-stick paper or a silicon cookie tray. Bake for about 15 minutes at 180 C, mixing several times (depending on your oven, just check to see how brown the granola is getting). Don’t be too worried if mixture looks a little wet when you take it out, it will dry up as it cools down. Then eat!
It’s the absolute worst when you buy an ingredient that you only end up using the tiniest amount of – it just sits in your pantry or fridge to die a slow death. I hate wasting food! Recently I made pasties which required a sprinkling of poppy seeds and I was left with a massive bag of the stuff. I’ve never cooked anything with poppy seeds before and I was determined to not let this bag get pushed to the back of my pantry shelf to make friends with that other container of brown seeds that I am yet to identify. Enter my saviour, Google, and I discovered this great sugar and dairy free recipe that looked delicious and nutritious enough to be a viable everyday snack.
A few notes:
- The original recipe called for lemons but I just used oranges because I had plenty on hand and they’re super cheap at the moment too 🙂
- I did not have any applesauce, nor have I ever used it before, so I just peeled and chopped up half a Pink Lady apple, nuked it in the microwave for a couple minutes, added a bit of water and kind of mashed and mixed it with a fork. Voila – instant apple sauce albeit slighty chunky!
- These muffins are great for vegans because they are dairy free!
- They are also sugar free; it uses maple syrup as a sweetener. Maple syrup (I used the 100% real stuff) is a great substitute for white sugar as it has a lower GI per 1/2 cup. It also provides a variety of minerals (calcium, iron, zinc and manganese) unlike white sugar which has zero to offer nutrient-wise. Be careful: make sure you use the 100% Maple Syrup and not the “Maple flavoured” syrup as the fake stuff can have up to 200% more sodium per 100ml, a variety of preservatives and none of the essential minerals.
Orange & Poppy Seed Muffins (makes 12)
- 2 cups wholemeal flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda (bicarb soda)
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 3 tbs poppy seeds
- 3/4 100% maple syrup
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup applesauce (see notes above on how to make your own)
- 1/3 cup orange juice (basically the juice of one orange)
- 2 tbsp orange zest
- 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (I used Almond Breeze)
- 1 tspn vanilla or vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl.
- Add wet ingredients to the dry and mix softly with a wooden spoon until just combined. Don’t over-mix. The batter should be soft and airy!
- Fill a 12 cup muffin tray with the mixture, each about 80% full.
- Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown on top. Test if they are cooked by popping in a skewer or toothpick and if it comes out clean, they’re ready!
Thanks to “Live. Learn. Love. Eat.” for the great recipe. Check out the original (using lemons) here.