Oat and Almond Spice Granola

On Saturday evening I discovered our water wasn’t working. How does water not work you ask? The hot water wasn’t coming out of the faucet at all and the cold water was trickling. There wasn’t enough pressure to flush the toilets. Panic! I called a local small plumbing company solely based on the fact that they were located close to our house. As I dialed I thought “I didn’t ask neighbors for a referral. I didn’t even read Yelp. What’s wrong with me?”. But Mike picked right up, confirmed based on my description that we probably had a pipe burst and told me that he had gone to 20 jobs that day! He agreed to help us come turn off the water BUT he couldn’t do the repair until today. We freaked because WATER. And then we freaked because COST. But we really got lucky. Our water was only out of commission for around 20 hours and the total repair cost under $400 (we had heard “thousands”). I still couldn’t help but think that I could have bought the crib I want for that money. BOO!

burst pipe

In other, less dramatic news, I had granola on my grocery list and completely forgot it. It was either run to the store or sift through the cabinets because I MUST HAVE GRANOLA! I chose to make some while waiting for the plumber.

granola fixin's

I made a similar granola a couple of years ago called Spiced Pumpkin Seed Granola. This version is better! The roughly chopped almonds have so much more crunch and flavor than the sliced almonds. Also, the balance of the other ingredients just worked better. I frequently have a issue with homemade granola being either to crunchy/over-baked or too soft. This was the prefect texture and balance of flavors.

PUMPKIN PIE SPICE COCONUT OIL GRANOLA

PUMPKIN PIE SPICE COCONUT OIL GRANOLA

The water is back, the dishes are clean and the plumber is paid. Still would have rather have had a crib!

Oat and Almond Spice Granola

  • 1 1/4 cups unsalted raw almonds
  • 2 heaping cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • raisins or dried cranberries, optional

Method

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Chop the almonds coarsely and pour them into a large bowl.
  • Add the oats, salt, brown sugar, sunflower seeds and pumpkin pie spice into the bowl with the almonds and stir to combine.
  • In a small microwaveable bowl, combine honey and coconut oil, and heat for 40 seconds. Stir to dissolve the coconut oil and add the vanilla extract.
  • Pour the honey mixture over the oats and stir so that they are evenly coated.
  • Pour the oats evenly onto a Silpat or parchment lined baking sheet.
  • Bake the oats for 5 minutes and then stir them around. Return to the oven for 5-7 more minutes (I cooked for 7). Watch closely so it won’t burn. (It didn’t look ready to me but I took it out, trusting the recipe, and I’m glad I did. The stated cooking time produces a perfectly crunchy granola)
  • Pour the granola and onto a piece of wax paper to cool. Spread it out into a thin layer, about 1/4 inch thick.
  • After it cools completely, break the granola into clusters and store in an airtight container.

I adapted this recipe slightly because I only had 2 cups of oats vs. 3. Also didn’t feel like getting the food processor out so I chopped the almonds by hand. Recipe from Lovely Little Kitchen

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Acorn Squash Spice Cake

acorn squash I bought this acorn squash at the SOTJ farmer’s market and had no idea what to do it…I had never used one before. When I cut it open it looked like a pumpkin so I decided to use the roasted flesh like pumpkin puree and bake a loaf cake! acorn squash After the squash was baked it was easy to mash! My squash produced two cups of puree. I used one cup for the cake and put the rest in the freezer to use in another cake or maybe as a yummy addition to risotto! baked acorn squash The cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger and cloves smell amazing when they come together in the batter. cake batter

It was dark by the time we sliced up the cake last night and unfortunately this is the only pic I have. I can’t take pics today because I covered it with foil last night so it looks quite smooshed! My sons friend Stu said it reminded him of zucchini bread…probably because it’s the only other cake he can think of that has “vegetables” in it. It came out super moist and really doesn’t need icing. I was just craving cream cheese and had to add it 🙂

Acorn Squash spice cake

Acorn Squash Spice Cake

  • 1 small/medium acorn squash
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 brown sugar
  • 1/4 organic canola oil
  • 1/4 plain yogurt (I used Whole Foods organic brand)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground clove
  • 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds and stringy insides. Put the squash cut side down on a high sided baking tray and fill the tray with ½ an inch of water. Roast for about an 1 hour, or until the squash is very tender. Remove from the oven and let the squash cool.  Scoop out the flesh with a spoon and mash with a fork until smooth. Set aside 1 cup of the puree for the bread (my squash produced about 2 cup).
  • Set oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
  • In a medium size bowl, blend together 1 cup of the squash puree, sugar, oil, yogurt, vanilla and eggs.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, spices, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Slowly add flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until no longer lumpy.  At this point you can stir in about 1/2 cup chopped walnuts if you want to (I didn’t have any).
  •  Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray and pour batter in. Bake for 45-50 minutes until set (test with a toothpick).
  • Once the cake was cooled I added a cream cheese glaze. Set out 3 ounces of cream cheese until it comes to room temp. Stir in 3 tablespoons powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 tablespoon milk and a few dashes of cinnamon.