Friday, December 25, 2009

Granola Report - Parshat Vayigash Part II

My husband, Sam and I both hate when people tell us what to do. This becomes tricky in many areas - we play the cute card when wording our requests to each other and pad our critiques and suggestions to soften the blow. Funny thing is that when it comes to following recipes, Sam, a sometimes cook, loves to follow a recipe to a T, whereas I prefer to take a recipe as a set of suggestions. When we cook together this drives Sam crazy, but when I cook alone, I usually produce results that he loves to eat.

Every once in a while not following a recipe backfires on me. For example, this morning, I didn't even follow my own recipe for the granola. Now to be honest, it was more a case of distraction than disregard, but I made the mistake of mixing the dried fruit in with the oats and oil to be baked in the oven, when they are supposed to be added after the oat mixture has already baked. Only after pulling the baking pan out of the oven did I chastise myself for my mistake, but I chuckled too. Apparently I don't even like to tell myself what to do.

Luckily, I pulled the granola out about 20 minutes earlier than I had suggested in the recipe after stirring the mixture twice in the oven. The fruit have a slight burnt taste, but when consumed with the rest of the granola they are fine. I actually think I had the cooking time in my previous post set for too long - 40 minutes would have burnt the granola. So I have edited the recipe to instruct cooking for 20 minutes only, and at a slightly lower temperature (325 degrees) Try to avoid my mistake and add the fruit AFTER cooking the granola, you will avoid any burnt flavors.

In truth, this granola recipe is very adaptable - it can easily be halved to make a smaller amount (which is what I did this morning) and you can really substitute any kinds of oats (I used Irish), nuts (I only used chopped pecans) and dried fruit (I used cherries and cranberries) depending on your preferences or what you have on hand (it was what I had on hand - this often determines how I cook and I am frequently adapting recipes to what I have on hand).

Here are some pictures of the incorrectly mixed granola - please don't be lead astray by them. But if you are, the granola will still be edible, Sam and I are munching on it right now; according to him "mm pretty good, they're a little burnt though." But he continued to snack and didn't tell me what to do!

P.S. Yay for no work today - I was finally able to take pictures in day light!

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