Whole grains are problematic for our digestive systems. They contain gluten, which causes trouble for many. They also contain anti-nutrients which prevent your body from being able to absorb all their vitamins and minerals.
There are two schools of thought about how to deal with this problem.
- Prepare the grains properly by employing traditional soaking, sprouting, and sourdough fermentation methods to reduce the gluten and anti-nutrients.
- Don’t eat grains. Preparation is too much trouble, and we don’t need them anyway.
I’m somewhere in the middle. I keep grains to a minimum, and make sure they are pretty well prepared.
And then I have to factor in that my daughter just LOVES granola.
Granola is one of those foods that has the aura of a health food, but isn’t as healthy as one would think. Besides the issue of the grains, commercial brands generally have lots of sugar, and are made with inflammation-inducing industrial oils, such as soybean oil.
That’s why I make my own with real food ingredients.
4 cups rolled oats (not quick cooking)
1 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
2/3 cup yogurt
8 tsp. cinnamon
2/3 cup (150 gm.) coconut oil OR melted butter OR olive oil
2/3 cup honey OR maple syrup (I used a combo of cane sugar and honey this time because I ran out of honey)
Include some or all of the following:
Unsalted nuts (I prefer slivered almonds and pecans)
Seeds (pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds etc.)
Dried fruit (I like dried apple rings and raisins without added sugar)
Dried coconut pieces
The night before
1. In a large bowl, mix together 4 cups of rolled oats with 1 1/3 cups of whole wheat flour.
|Granola and Wheat|
2. Add 2/3 cup of yogurt and mix. It’s not going to look pretty.
3. Let the oat mixture “soak" overnight.
The Next Morning
4. Break up any clumps then add: nuts, seeds, cinnamon, salt and mix.
5. Create a well in the center of the mixture.
6. Pour the oil/butter you chose and the honey/maple syrup into the well.
|Coconut oil and a combo of honey and cane sugar (ran out of honey)|
7. Mix thoroughly.
8. Place on a cookie sheet (I line mine first with baking paper) and bake at 120 Celsius (250 Fahrenheit) for about 75 minutes, stirring every so often.
|Granola Going into the Oven|
It is done when the granola is dry and crunchy, not moist. Problem is that as long as it’s hot, it won’t be crunchy. To test, I take a bit out of the oven and let it cool. Then I check the cooled granola for doneness.
9. When it is cooled, add dried fruit and coconut.
P.S. The reason I add whole wheat to the oats is that soaking oats alone won’t reduce the phytic acid – one of the anti-nutrients. You need the phytase enzyme to break it down.
granola, oats, breakfast, cereal