I’ve just recently noticed that I tend to go through phases with foods (especially breakfast foods) where that’s all I’ll eat for the next few weeks and even months. I think it all started with the green smoothie. For about two months that’s just about all I ate for breakfast. It cost my parents a fortune buying ominous amounts of kale to feed my growing green smoothie obsession. And then one day, I just got sick of it. Enough was enough, and I went onto my next phase, which also turned about to be quite expensive because I probably trialed just about every muesli there is in Woolworths.
Actually, now that I think about it, I do remember being obsessed with cereals like nutrigrain and cheerios when I was younger, so maybe I shouldn’t go blaming the green smoothie for it all. I guess it’s just always been a part of me.
I’d like to say that I’ve gotten over my breakfast phases now but I don’t think I am at that level just yet. I have to say though, that I have been more varied with the breakfasts I eat and now there seems to be a combination of phases all in one, which is better than it used to be, I guess. Take, for example, this winter, my phase at this time seemed to be centered around porridge. But not just any porridge, gourmet porridge. That’s right, plain old porridge just wasn’t going to do it for me. I had to eat just about every flavour of porridge you could think of. I credit myself for this phase though, because at least it was just a bit more adventurous than a boring old bowl of cheerios day after day.
These days, I seem to be going through a very wide array of phases all in one. For example, I have a very big obsession with smoothie bowls and ‘nicecream’ at the moment, as well as overnight oats, the deadly combination of peanut butter and banana, oh and how could I forget dark chocolate. Seriously I can’t get enough of that stuff. But there is one thing that seems to stand out amongst all of this and that is big, chunky, delicious, homemade GRANOLA and when you combine it with peanut butter and chocolate, you have yourself a winner there.
Addictive Chocolate Cluster Granola
Serves 4 – 6
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ⅔ cup almonds
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup cacao powder
- ⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ⅓ cup natural peanut butter
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 150 C degrees. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Set aside.
- In a bowl mix together oats, cocoa powder, salt , cinnamon powder and almonds. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan (on medium heat), whisk together coconut oil, peanut butter and maple syrup till smooth and well combined.
- Pour the wet mixture over the oats mixture. Stir to combine till the oats mixture is completely moistened.
- Transfer the oat mixture to the baking tray and spread evenly.
- Bake at 150 for 30 minutes, stirring once after 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let the granola cool for 1-2 hours. Do not stir.
- Once the granola has semi-cooled, mix in the dried cranberries and chocolate chips.
- Store in an airtight container.
- The original recipe calls for pecans but I didn’t have them so I just used almonds and they worked a treat, however, feel free to give the pecans a go.
- This granola can be served with milk or yogurt, fruit, as a topping on smoothie bowls or snacked on by itself!
- Inspired by Cook With Manali
Ways of serving this granola:
By itself, with milk or yogurt…..it also goes great with coconut and fresh fruit!
On top of a smoothie bowl….
On top of ‘nicecream’…
I vow that once you have made this granola for yourself, you will never have to buy a store-bought granola ever again!