Hooray…It’s National Cereal Day Orange Peel-Cardamom Gluten-Free Granola

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Hooray, March 7th is National Cereal Day and I celebrated this morning (really, most mornings!) with some Greek yogurt topped with my homemade “Orange Peel-Cardamom Gluten-Free Granola” and fresh blueberries.

Every time I make granola I tweak my basic recipe using whatever I happen to have in my pantry at the time. Recently I have ended up with quite a few nuts and flaked coconut leftover from photo shoots, as well as maple syrup and lots of oranges. One thing I noticed when looking back on previous granola posts is that each time I make it the mix gets simpler and simpler. Hopefully this translates into other parts of my life!

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Ingredients tossed together and spread out on parchment paper lined sheet pans ready for the oven…….

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… baked and finished off with additional ingredients.

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The candied orange peel (how-to candy orange peel here) and cardamom give this granola a wonderfully complex flavor that is both earthy and rich.

Here…..have a bite! Happy Cereal Day all month!

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Orange Peel Cardamom Gluten Free Granola

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 3 cups gluten-free old-fashioned rolled oats (Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1 1/2 cups whole almonds
  • 1 cup pecan halves & pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries or cherries, divided
  • 1 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened, divided
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup slices almonds
  • 1/2 cup slivered orange peel, plain or candied

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl mix together the rolled oats, whole almonds, pecan halves and pieces, half of the dried cranberries and half of the coconut flakes. Toss ingredients together.
  3. Whisk together the cardamom and maple syrup. Drizzle over the oat mixture and toss to coat all ingredients well.
  4. Evenly divide mixture between the two sheet pans and spread out into even layers. Bake for 35 minutes, stirring often, until mixture is a light golden brown.
  5. Remove pans from the oven and evenly divide the remaining ingredients between the two pans – the second half of the dried cranberries and coconut flakes along with the sliced almonds and orange peel. Stir around to mix and return pans to the oven for another 10-15 minutes.
  6. Remove pans from the oven and let granola cool completely. Store in airtight containers for up to 3 months. You can also store in the refrigerator. A jar of homemade granola makes a great gift!

Teresa Blackburn      www.teresablackburnfoodstying.com     http://www.foodonfifth.com

“Bow-Wow Peanut Butter Dog Treats”

Hubbard

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We all need to just have fun sometimes…doing something a bit silly. Today was my day! Or maybe, to be honest, one of many days, but that is another story.

I have been holding onto this little recipe for some time now. It was given to me by my friend and baker extraordinaire Gina Olds. Although she makes a mean baguette and the flakiest of croissants what used to be a hit at our house was her homemade dog treats! Not for me, nor Wouter, but for our dog Ella. When Gina closed her neighborhood bakery it was a rather sad day. Suddenly, like Old Mother Hubbard, our cupboard was a bit bare!

Gina gave all the pups in Historic Germantown a treat when they stopped by her bakery to visit…which they did every day because she gave them a treat! It was kinda like which came first the dog visit or the dog treat if you know what I am getting at. To see some of the many reasons why I like Gina so much check out her blog Heart Written Words.

Her dog treats were so good, natural with no chemicals or sugars, that some of the babies in our neighborhood used them for teething biscuits! I am not kidding! True story.

Peanut butter is the “hook” flavor..who doesn’t like peanut butter? I know some of you cannot eat it, but it is for the dog…right? Use Almond butter if peanut butter cannot enter your home. Your dog will love them, and you, just as well.

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Sources for Dog Bone Treat cookie cutters:

http://www.joann.com/wilton-metal-cookie-cutter-3in-blue-dog-bone/8218257.html

http://www.amazon.com/Dog-Bone-Piece-Cookie-Cutter/dp/B0027CU0GS

https://www.etsy.com/listing/161298099/dog-bone-cookie-cutter-custom-treat

Other ingredients you will probably have on hand are flour, baking powder, egg, milk.

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Baked for almost an hour…dry and crunchy, peanut butter dog treats. So easy. What great holiday (yes I just said that word) gifts for your dog friends.

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I must get every crumb!

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Is this all there is?

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Bow-Wow Peanut Butter Dog Treats

  • Servings: 24-30
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 – 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter (or almond butter)
  • 3/4 cup “0” fat milk (Ella is on a diet!) you can use whole fat
  • Special tool: Dog Bone cookie cutter

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle or dough hook mix together the flour, baking powder. Mix on low to blend.
  3. Add egg and peanut butter. Mix on medium speed until well blended. Turn mixer to low and drizzle in milk until a dough forms.
  4. Divide dough in half and roll out on a lightly floured board to about 1/2 inch thick. Cut into bones using shaped cookie cutter. Place bones on a parchment paper lined sheet pan.
  5. Bake for about 1 hour or until treats are hard and crunchy. Let cool completely and store in an airtight container.

As you can see from the photos of Ella above she ate every crumb and longing looked for more as she licked her lips!

These can be made with large or small bone shaped cookie cutters…I used a larger size but next time I will use a smaller size and make twice as many.

These treats make wonderful gifts for your dog friends!

Teresa Blackburn       http://www.foodonfifth.com         http://www.teresablackburnfoodstyling.com

Sources:

Dog Bone Cookie cutters – Michaels or online

French rolling-pin/Marble slab for rolling pastry – Williams Sonoma

 

“Easy-to-Make Simple Syrups” Holiday Gifts, E.A.T. #15

cocktails with simple syrups

Time fleets….gift-giving season is here…just a perusal of Etsy or Scoutmob makes it very clear that home-made, hand-made and diy gifts are the “thing”. With that in mind here is a final, very easy-as-this gift idea for all your food friends. Make one or make them all, it only takes an afternoon in your kitchen, and it really will put you in a holiday mood. I promise!

“Beet Juice & Ginger Simple Syrup” chilled with a splash of white rum or drizzled over vanilla ice cream with a sugar cookie? “Cranberry & Orange” with white wine anyone? “Lemon & Thyme Simple Syrup” added to a cup of relaxing hot tea with a slice of lime? Or maybe an “Apple, Habanero & Mint” with Seltzer & fruit ice cubes for a non-alcoholic pick-me-up?

Simple syrups

From Top Left clockwise: “Fresh Beet & Ginger”, “Gala Apple, Habanero & Mint”, “Cranberry Orange” and “Very Lemon Thyme” simple syrups.

The process of each syrup is the same. It is as “easy-as-this”.

Basic Simple Syrup Recipe

1 cup water (liquid) + 1 cup sugar, a 1-1 ratio

“Cranberry & Orange Simple Syrup” – 1 lb fresh cranberries, the peel & juice from one orange, 2 cups water + 2 cups sugar. Bring to a boil, turn to simmer, stirring often until mixture thickens & sugar has melted. Cook for 20 minutes on low heat. Remove from heat. Let cool completely.

Cranberry Orange Simple SyrupCranberry & Orange Simple Syrup

“Apple, Habanero & Mint Simple Syrup” – Using same process as above just add 2 chopped apples,  1/2 tsp. finely chopped Habanero pepper (wear gloves!) & 1/2 cup mint leaves to pan.

Apple, Habanero & mint simple syrupApple, Habanero & Mint Simple Syrup

“Fresh Beet Juice & Ginger Root Simple Syrup” – (I had cooked some fresh beets in water for another recipe..the color was just fantastic, I tasted it and it was really sweet and delicious…a simple syrup came of this happy accident.)  2 cups fresh beet juice + 1/4 cup peeled & sliced fresh ginger + 1 tbsp lemon peel simmered with 2 cups sugar made one really great syrup!

Beet Juice & Ginger Simple SyrupBeet Juice & Ginger Simple Syrup

“Very Lemon & Thyme Simple Syrup” – the peel of 2 lemons, 1 tsp lemon extract or syrup + a handful of fresh thyme. Same process, subtle flavors.

Lemon & Thyme Simple SyrupLemon Thyme Simple Syrup

How to Bottle or Jar:

After syrups have cooled completely strain each through a fine sieve. Wash & dry bottles or jars with lids.

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strained simple syrup

Pour strained liquids into prepared bottles or jars. I, once again, got out my stash of bottles, caps & bottle capper (all from All Seasons here in Nashville) to decant my simple syrups into.

bottles of simple syrups

The apple has a hint of pink, the beet a deep red-burgundy, the lemon light & yellow, and the cranberry a clear red.

It is as “easy-as-that”.

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have fun! life is not perfect.