Reinventing Granola

Granola is great as a snack, tastes yummy, travels well and full of healthy energy boosting ingredients….right?

To a certain point yes. Granola often contains a base of oats, aiding digestion, dried fruits, supplying nutrients and vitamins, and a mix of seeds and nuts, providing the good fats. But it is also full of sugar, either from syrups, refined sugar or honey that are used to sweeten the cereal and from sweetened dried fruits such as pineapples, papaya, cranberries and banana chips.

I wanted to create a granola without all this additional sugar and find a healthy binder instead, so I began with an investigation into ingredients substitutions.

I’ve often used homemade unsweetened apple puree as a substitute in baking for sugar and butter so i thought this might work and attempted to try it…now the granola tasted ok, but the apple made the ingredients too wet and it failed to get the crunchy texture that granola has… and it has got to be crunchy!

Therefore, internet searching recommenced…

Then I found a few sites that suggested using date puree as a sweetener…and I conveniently had some dates…

Let the cooking begin!

….

The Result?

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SUCCESS!

So Scrap the sugary granola and make your own healthier version. And the best thing about making it yourself is you get to add your favourite ingredients!

Check out my basic recipe for a healthy granola!

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The Great Snack Challenge!

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So I have a little project going on at the moment and my boyfriend is the guinea pig!

My mission is to create healthy snack foods for my boyfriend by either inventing something completely different or altering recipes, excluding the bad fats, sugars and using natural ingredients. At the moment he works away from home during the week, so these snacks have to be able to travel well too.

One major challenge though… one of his favourite snack foods is cheese puffs.

Now how do you make those healthy?!

You can follow my mission here!

Its Spicy Falafel Time!

I love making and eating falafels, they taste amazing with a yoghurt and mint dip (or with ketchup!) and leave you completely satisfied!

Normally when I make falafels, I brown them lightly in a pan with a little oil before cooking them through in the oven to get a crispy outside. But today I decided to go all out healthy, omitting the frying and  they still tasted delicious and crunchy!!

These are my new and improved baked spicy falafels!

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This evenings batch had some added pinto beans in that I had left over and I chowed it down with a pile of cooked kale!

Healthy Start

Good morning!

So I started today with a cup of hot water with lemon and a bowl of quinoa porridge. My boyfriend likes to take the mick out of me for having just hot water and no tea bag but it is known to have many health benefits, including aiding digestion and jump starting your metabolism. Tasty-yummies blog lists 10 benefits to drinking warm lemon water.

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I’ve only made quinoa porridge once before, but it makes a great change to my normal oat porridge, easy to make and is high in protein. Today I added banana, cinnamon and sultanas, which work amazingly as natural sweeteners and topped it off with a spoonful of Meridian 100% peanut peanut-butter to satisfy my nut addiction! I also added a spoonful of ground linseeds, high in fibre and omega-3, after the quinoa was cooked.

Hello!

So this is going to be my first post on my blog! Today (or rather tomorrow as it is past 10pm) is going to be the beginning of my healthy living and clean eating. I have always eaten healthy and kept fit, but recently with a job that’s taken me away from home during the week, my eating has been pretty erratic and I haven’t been running in ages! Currently there are loads of  different ‘healthy’ diet styles out there, raw and paleo are of particular interest to me and I hope to try out these diets along the way. So here’s to clean eating and keeping fit!