The wildlife are showing up around the homestead lately. Last week, there was a pileated woodpecker in the backyard. These majestic birds always fill me with awe. I hear them from time to time, but it's not often I see them. Early this morning, I heard a barred owl. I hear these fairly often, when I'm awake during the night. This morning, Joseph and Rick saw the fox come across the garden and orchard. We had sightings last spring. It got one of our chickens and one narrowly escaped. Needless to say, we won't be letting "the girls" out for their usual afternoon free ranging. We'll give it a few days, and hope the fox will move on, finding nothing to stick around for. They are beautiful, but so are my chickee ladies, and I'd just as soon they stick around for a while. Sage and Callie kitties have been hanging out on the roof these recent warm days.
I've never been much of a granola lover. I know... I've got the vegetarian, patchouli-lovin', organic, herbmama thing down, but granola... not so much. That is, until I made my own. This is granola I enjoyed until every last bit was gone, and must make more. I generally used the recipe from SouleMama, but changed it to suit what I liked and had on hand.
Nut & Seed Granola
3 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup almonds, chopped
(Recipe also calls for 1/2 cup each sunflower & pumpkin seeds)
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch sea salt
1/3 cup cold-pressed vegetable oil (I used coconut)
1/3 cup maple syrup or brown rice syrup
1/4 cup apple or orange juice (can try other juices)
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, seeds, almonds, flour, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. In a separate bowl, combine oil, syrup, juice and extracts. Slowly pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients, using a spatula to fold and evenly coat the dry mixture with the wet. Spread on a cookie sheet or in a shallow pan and bake. Turn granola every 15 or 20 minutes so that it toasts evenly. Bake until granola is dry and golden (45-60 mins). Store in an airtight jar (fills a half-gallon jar). Double recipe if desired.