What could be more practical and nice than to have a handmade mix of cereal and dried fruit for your breakfast!! A cereal mix full of nutrients, vitamins, energy and, of course, great taste.
Actually, this method for preparing your breakfast solves your hands. Of course, you may want to ask me, how time consuming is to prepare a proper breakfast? Well, I’m sure that most of you have missed your breakfast many times, because you did not have time to prepare it. Granola is the solution for those mornings full of rush.
This granola I suggest today contains oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, coconut, and as I said already, dried sour cherries. You certainly can replace any ingredient with another that you like most. You can use dried cherries or cranberries, almonds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, etc. Let your imagination run free and experiment 😉 But be sure to keep the proportions.
Walnuts, a very good source of fiber, are high in polyunsaturated fats and omega-3 fats, contain many antioxidants, such as phenolic compounds, melatonin, and many metals, such as manganese, copper, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium. Still, they are a very good source of vitamin E. Moreover, walnuts contain B vitamins such as riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B-6 and folic acid.
Sunflower seeds are a food rich in phytosterols, fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6, folate, B vitamins and vitamin E. They are rich in protein and fiber, magnesium, iron and phosphorus. They are an important source of other antioxidants, such as selenium.
Sour cherry is rich in vitamin C (raw fruit), antioxidant polyphenols, such as anthocyanins, which fight free radicals. Their significant antioxidant action gives anti-aging properties. The kaempferol and quersitin they contain improve memory, concentration and vision. The dried sour cherries I found at my favorite shop in the center of Athens do not contain extra sugar, but they are dried and processed exclusively with their own sugars. Even healthier!!
- • 1 ½ cups rolled oats
- • ¾ cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
- • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- • ½ teaspoon salt
- • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- • ¼ cup olive oil
- • ½ cup honey, or maple syrup
- • 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
- • ¾ cup dried sour cherries
- • ¾ cup unsweetened coconut, shredded
- Preheat the oven to 150° C (300o F). Lay a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a bowl mix the oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, salt and cinnamon.
- In a small bowl or a small food processor, mix the olive oil, honey and sugar.
- Pour the mixture of liquid materials in the bowl of solid materials and mix well with a wooden or silicone spatula.
- Transfer the mixture into the baking sheet and spread it out well.
- Put in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes until you get a deep brown color. Be sure to stir every 15 minutes so the granola cooks evenly. It will seem too "watery" while it is in the oven. It is normal.
- Approximately 10 minutes before removing from the oven, add the dried cherries and grated coconut and mix well.
- 8 When cooked, remove from the oven and let cool completely. It dries into chunks. Do not stir until cool. Only then, break it into small pieces and the store it in an airtight container.