In this week’s Martin & Sylvia story "A Trip to Grandma's", Martin and Sylvia go on a car trip to their grandmother's house.
While stopping at hole-in-the-wall places and trying new food is a fun part of any road trip adventure, when our family has a long journey planned I like to have a stash of healthier snacks for hunger emergencies.
Packed with nuts, dried fruit, and crispy rolled oats, one of my favorite go-to snacks is homemade granola.
The wonderful thing about granola is that you can customize it exactly to your family’s taste. Is your little one a big fan of apples? Great! Buy a bag of dried Granny-Smiths and add a little more cinnamon to make “apple pie granola”. Do you love pears? Use those and mix in a big pinch of cardamon.
You need to keep the ratios of liquid/nuts/dried fruit about the same, but otherwise feel free to improvise with what sounds delicious or what you have on hand.
Road Trip Granola
oil or cooking spray for greasing the pan
2/3 cup honey
¼ cup olive oil
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups rolled oats
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup dried fruit (I used 1/3 cup dried cranberries and 1/3 cup diced, dried figs)
1 1/3 cups chopped nuts (I used 1 cup of pumpkin seeds and 1/3 cup pecans)
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, and grease a rimmed baking sheet very well.
In a large bowl, mix the honey, olive oil, egg whites and vanilla. In a smaller bowl, mix the oats, cinnamon and salt. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, and stir until the oats are coated well. Last, mix in the fruit and nuts, and, again, mix until everything is well incorporated.
Pour the granola out onto the greased baking sheet, and use your hands to pat it into an even layer. Bake for about 45 minutes, stirring the granola every 10 minutes or so to ensure that it cooks evenly. You’ll know it’s ready when the granola is beginning to turn a deep brown and smells incredible.
Once the granola is finished, carefully scrape it off the baking sheet onto a clean tea towel. (The towel prevents condensation which can make the granola soggy.) Allow the granola to cool completely, then store it in an airtight container to nibble from as you travel down the road.
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About the Author
The Sparkle Kitchen Series is created by Meryl Carver-Allmond.
Meryl lives in a hundred year old house near the prairie with her sweet husband, two pre-schoolers, one puppy, one gecko, and about ten chickens. While she's been writing since she could pick up a pen, in recent years she's discovered the joy of photography, too. She feels lucky to be able to combine those skills, along with a third passion--showing people that cooking for themselves can be healthy and fun--in her weekly Sparkle Kitchen posts.
When Meryl isn't writing for Sparkle Kitchen, you can find her on her personal blog, My Bit of Earth, where she writes about chickens, babies, knitting, gardening, food, photography, and whatever else tickles her fancy on any given day.