Granola With Pomegranate

Granola takes minutes to make in the microwave.  It is as quick as any

whole pomegranitesbreakfast and I love to put all kinds of yummy things in it…..like walnuts, pepitas (pumpkin seeds), flax seeds, and coconut – not to mention dried fruit.

For this particular recipe, I left out the dried fruit because I found my new BFF (new better favorite and friendlier). I just discovered a combination that I can’t resist.

Here, it is the creamy goodness of yogurt and pomegranates spooned over granola. I noticed other people top yogurt with granola, but at my table we top granola with yogurt and fruit. It is not alpom seedsl semantics, there really is a reason for our madness. Farm families for generations have found how to ramp up the energy value of breakfast to make it through the morning chores (now more often the morning workout).

The Secret is lots of whole grain goodness. 

 

Granola With Pomegranate

 

4 cups rolled oats (not instant)

2 tablespoons flax seeds

½  cup chopped walnuts

½  cup chopped pepitas

½ cup shaved coconut

1 teaspoon cinnamon

¼  teaspoon salt

¼  cup maple syrup

¼ cup brown sugar

¼  cup coconut oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

 

Toppings:

Plain Yogurt

Fresh Pomegranate

 granola med

Combine oats, flax seeds, walnuts, pepitas, coconut, cinnamon, and salt in a 2-quart microwave safe container. Microwave on high about 4 to 5 minutes, until heated and starting to toast.  Combine remaining ingredients in a 2-cup measure. Microwave on high 2 to 2 ½ minutes or until sugar starts to dissolve, stirring twice. Pour syrup mixture over warm oat mixture and stir well. Microwave on high 4 to 5 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring twice. Allow to cool, stirring a few times to prevent granola from sticking to the bowl. To serve, top with yogurt and pomegranate.

Whole Wheat Waffles With Pecans and Pears

Louisiana food is an unusual experience for many, but especially for this Iowa farm girl. Who could imagine that there was a place where I could have two gardens a year? The rose trellis at the end of the covered porch was covered with hundreds of an antique variety of red climbing rose, and that was just one of the surprises in my yard during my first growing season. When spring brought out buds I found all sorts of fascinating trees in our yard, including pears and pecans. The combination always brings me back to wonderful Louisiana memories and flavors. Simple and elegant. Flavorful and inviting. Special and comforting. That what these cinnamon flavored whole wheat waffles have always been to my family.

 

Whole Wheat Waffles With Pecans and Pears
¼ cup butter
¾ cup whole wheat flour
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
2/3 cup buttermilk
2 egg yolks
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 egg whites
1 pear, peeled and diced
½ cup toasted pecans

Melt butter in microwave on High for ½ to 1 minute or until melted. Stir in flour, sugar, salt, buttermilk, cinnamon, vanilla and egg yolks.  Beat egg whites until stiff and fold into batter.  Pour ¾ cup of batter into preheated waffle iron, add about 1 tablespoon each of pears and pecans.  Cook until golden brown. Serve with additional pear slices and pecans if desired.

Mushroom or Edamame Crostini

 

I love crostini….but if I have to be 100% honest – it is that I love toasted bread, and that is exactly what crostini is! With the addition of a drizzle of olive oil, garlic and maybe even a topping. When I would come home from track practice in middle school, I could eat half a loaf of bread toasted and slathered with butter, sugar, and cinnamon or maybe my own homemade chokecherry jelly (which spilled all over the kitchen carpet and ended my childhood days of making anything with deep red stainability). Onmornings of track meets when I needed a huge reservoir of energy, and needed to prepare it and eat it at 4:30 AM, I would reach for toasted bread once again – this time as a grilled cheese,. The toppings for edamame crostini include a smooth, rich tasting, homemade ricotta cheese.

Scald 8 cups of whole milk. Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar and allow to sit to make curds and whey. When curds form, carefully strain through cheesecloth until ricotta is the consistency you want. For more information on making fresh cheese, see recipe for Fresh Ricotta Cheese.

Edamame Crostini

 

1   baguette, sliced at an angle

2     cloves of garlic

1 cup fresh ricotta cheese

¾ cup cooked edamame beans

¼ cup grated parmesan cheese

zest of ½ lemon

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon basil, chopped

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Lay bread slices on baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Rub with garlic. Toast bread for about 2 to3 minutes. Remove from oven and spread each with a layer of ricotta cheese. Combine  remaining ingredients and lightly mash together with a fork or potato masher. You want some of the edamame to be smashed and some to still be intact. Top toasted bread with edamame mixture. Garnish with more lemon zest, Parmesan cheese and radish.

Mushroom Crostini

Follow recipe for Edamame Crostini except substitute fresh, grilled or sauteed mushrooms and Aspargus for Edamame.