Granola Revisited

>> Tuesday, December 15, 2009

My family loves our granola recipe. We usually eat it for breakfast every morning. Recently I decided to try to come up with a way to make it in the oven, so it wouldn't take so long. I really like the ease of making granola in the crock pot, but there are days I don't have several hours available to watch it. My husband and children all agree they prefer baked granola to crock pot granola, as it is crunchier and also has sweet clusters of granola that stick together. I like the fact that it bakes so quickly. Here's what I've come up with.

6 cups old fashioned oats
1 1/2 - 2 teaspoons cinnamon (we like extra cinnamon)

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. Pour the oats and cinnamon i
nto a non-stick baking pan. Mix the cinnamon into the oats. Next, pour oil and honey into a 1-cup measuring cup, followed by the vanilla. (By pouring the olive oil in first, the honey slides right out of the cup, rather than clinging to the glass sides.) Pour this mixture into the pan and mix well. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Be sure to stir the granola at the sides of the pan, so it doesn't burn.

Once the 30 minutes are up, I usually give it one last stir, turn off the oven, and put the granola back in the oven to cool overnight. It doesn't need to cool that long, but I find leaving it in the oven gives it a little extra baking time and helps it dry out so it's read
y to eat by morning. If you have a well insulated oven, I'd probably let the granola cool on the counter, but our oven is pretty old and cools off quickly.

One batch of granola usually lasts us about a week. We each eat 1/4 cup in milk for breakfast. Sometimes my kids like to eat it as a snack, as well. One fun way we've found is making "healthy donuts." I slice an apple into 3 rings, spread peanut butter over the tops like frosting, and let the kids top it off with granola "sprinkles." Granny Smiths are what we had on hand tonight, but it's even better with sweeter apples. The girls like to do this with bananas, as well.


Doll Clothes

>> Saturday, December 12, 2009

Last week I bought a sewing machine! I've been saving up for a while, so I was so excited when I was finally able to order it. My first project was to sew night gowns for the girls' dolls. They're a bit tight to get on or off, but once they're on, they fit well. These are very simple night gowns that I made from old t-shirts that no longer fit my youngest. I've discovered 3T or 4T short sleeved shirts work perfect for 18- inch dolls. The length of the shirt goes down to the doll's ankles, and the short sleeves go almost to the doll's wrists, so no hemming is required! I followed the basic instructions from this blog. She has several other helpful tutorials listed on her blog, as well. I'm so glad to have these night gowns finished for the girls' Christmas presents! And I look forward to learning how to do more projects, as well. I'm very much a beginner, but I'm having fun! :-)


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