A Bit of Trickery and Vegetarian Lasagna

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granola, low fat granola, healthy granola, fruit and nuts Before I even get into the recipe of that very delicious looking granola, I have to brag about something.  This past weekend our family got together for our annual ski trip weekend .  I was tasked with making the main course for Saturday night’s dinner.  So I decided to make my vegetarian lasagna, BUT without using ricotta cheese and only silken tofu!  Normally I wouldn’t do this because I actually really like ricotta.  But my family is so anti-tofu/soy/vegetarian foods (and so all about slabs of beef), that I had to jump on the the opportunity to trick them.  After they all shoved down somewhat large portions of my lasagna, I excitedly told them it was made with tofu.  I was so happy!  I tricked them into eating tofu AND they actually liked it. A lot!  The best part is, I don’t think I’ll ever let my carnivorous brother live this one down.  That’s right John…you ate tofu…and you liked it!

granola, healthy granola, low-fat granola, fruit and nut granola Ok…back to the granola!  In addition to my lasagna I wanted to bring some snack foods this weekend.  In the midst of potato chips, cookies and cake I knew I’d need to make something mildly healthy.  My granola recipe is a good recipe because unlike the store brand of granola, mine isn’t packed with extra fat and sugar.  Just lots of good lean protein and tons of fiber.  Plus, it makes a ton so I would still have some leftover at home for Dario and I.  You just can’t go wrong with this recipe.

My favorite way to eat this (besides straight from the container) is sprinkled over greek yogurt.  It adds a nice crunch and a bit of tartness from the dried fruit I put in it.

Granola2 Any component of this granola, for the most part, can be swapped for something else.  Not a fan of walnuts?  Use pecans.  Not a raisin fan?  Use cranberries instead.  Anything goes really.  Have fun and experiment with your favorite combination!

Cinnamon Vanilla Granola:
Ingredients:

  • 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup wheat bran
  • 1 cup roasted buckwheat (kasha)
  • 1 cup raw, unsalted peanuts
  • 1½ cups raw, unsalted chopped walnuts
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ fresh grated nutmeg
  • 2 cups mixed dried fruit, roughly chopped

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, wheat bran, buckwheat and nuts. Stir to combine.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium heat, mix together the vegetable oil, maple syrup. brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg. Cook over medium heat until the sugar melts and all the ingredients are combined.
  4. Pour oil and sugar mixture over the oats stirring to thoroughly combine.
  5. Spread granola mixture onto a large sheet pan covered with tin foil or a silpat.
  6. Bake at 350F for about 30 minutes or until granola is slightly golden.
  7. Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes and then mix in the dried fruit. Allow granola to dry on the counter completely, then store in a sealed container for up to 2 weeks.

Are you a granola fan?  What are your favorite additions?  Do you have any tips or tricks to keep it low-fat and low in sugar?  What’s your favorite way to eat it?

5 Comments

  1. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies

    February 11, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Ha! That’s so funny. 🙂 I always tell people that in something like that, they won’t even be able to taste the tofu, but no one ever believes me. But it’s true! 😀

    • mewinebrenner

      February 11, 2013 at 5:22 pm

      I know! Though now…they’ll probably question anything I make! Ha oh well – mission accomplished!

  2. emily (a nutritionist eats)

    February 12, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    I love that you tricked them into liking tofu. 🙂

    • mewinebrenner

      February 12, 2013 at 1:38 pm

      Me too! Even though Im glad they liked the lasagna, I’m more excited they ate the tofu!

  3. Simply Life

    February 12, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    oh this granola looks fabulous!

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