Seedy Maple Granola

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After discovering a few months ago (after literally a lifetime of avoidance) that I’m not allergic to seeds I have been trying to eat them more often. This granola seemed an interesting addition to a breakfast repertoire which could do with a few more options.

I have to confess that despite oats supposedly being so good for you and porridge being fashionable and all, I just don’t get on with porridge, it’s not my thing (well, certainly not at the moment!). So this was a way to add oats too.

This recipe comes courtesy of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall whose recipe books I am very much enjoying at the moment. He has a way of making things seem approachable and I like that. It’s from River Cottage Light and Easy which is a book I’d actually put off buying for a while, thinking there would be nothing that appealed. This isn’t true but it took WHSmith having the book for only £6 (bargain!) for me to actually buy it.

You can probably find the recipe in a google books preview but here is my variation:

Seedy Maple Granola
Mix 120g porridge oats, 40g chopped cashew nuts, 20g pumpkin seeds 20g sunflower seeds and a pinch of salt in a large bowl. Add 15g light olive oil and mix well. Add 50ml maple syrup and 25ml water with a tsp vanilla extract and mix again. Tip onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 40-50 minutes at 150C. Remove and allow to cool when it smells toasty and delicious. When cold store in an airtight container for apparently up to a month.

I served mine with a chopped cox’s apple (so delicious at the moment) and some limited edition Yeo Valley spiced apple and quince yogurt (more new things to try!). I really enjoyed the granola as an added texture and flavour in my breakfast. It wasn’t as crunchy as I’d thought but bear in mind I’ve never eaten commercial granola. The warm toasty oaty, nutty flavours were great. The yogurt was good too, I’d recommend it.

Seedy Maple Granola

Miso Noodle Soup with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

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A quick and easy lunch for one. Continuing my recent theme of trying new things, miso was next on the list (this post has been in draft so long that I’ve already published something else with miso; I think it’s safe to say I like miso!). In the same spirit I decided to combine things I had available and that I also wanted to eat (hence two kinds of noodle!) into a soup for lunch one day. I have to admit I’m not a big soup eater at all, certainly not for a main meal. But actually, this was really enjoyable and worked well for lunch.

Amounts are clearly to taste, and are more of a record for me of what I did than a suggestion to you as to how to make a definitive miso noodle soup. But if you want to follow them that’s ok too!

Miso Noodle Soup with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
1 sachet vegetarian miso noodle soup paste (what a cheat!!!) I used ‘Itsu’ – it was on offer in one of the big supermarkets a while back.
20g brown rice udon noodles, 10g buckwheat noodles
Few small florets broccoli, tbsp frozen peas (10g), small carrot, peeled and sliced finely on the diagonal, small amount of yellow pepper, finely sliced, very small amount of fresh chilli, finely sliced.
Good splash of soy sauce, squeeze of lemon juice and toasted pumpkin seeds (about 5g)

Bring water to the boil, add the noodles (follow packet instructions, mine said 5-6 minutes). Add veg (earlier for softer, later for more crunch). In the meantime, toast the pumpkin seeds and make up the miso sachet (I added 150ml water but might add a little less next time).

Drain noodles and veg, add to miso soup, add soy sauce, lemon juice and pumpkin seeds.

Enjoy the umami of the miso and the freshness of the vegetables with the slippery noodles and crunchy seeds. Delicious.

Miso Noodle Soup with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds