The house is filled with the scent of baking granola. Warm cinnamon mixed with the buttery smell of roasting walnuts. Paired with thick yoghurt and fruit, it makes for a lovely morning and just radiates cosiness.
A healthy breakfast. Non-fussy mornings so that we can get out the door on time. It is quite the achievement when snowpants, boots, mittens, hats, scarves have to be found and then put on the body. I like to start the process with the kids at least 20 minutes before we have to leave the house. Inevitably, a mitt will have gone missing or someone will not feel like getting dressed today.
But, I do love winter. I love the extremes. The snowstorm that rages all day and night and leads to the school being closed. Then, the next day, greeted by sun and a foot or two of fluffy, white snowflakes. The cold weather that the kids and I play in only to come inside to a warm home filled with blankets, pillows and candles. The option to curl up with a book by the fireplace or skate on the ice rink down the street. During the cold months, I give myself permission to indulge in more reading and the arts. To have a burst of fresh air and then spend time indoors.
Given all the Oscar buzz around Lady Bird, my husband and I went to see the film. I had no idea what to expect and ended up loving it. It resonated on so many levels but most significantly, the mother-daughter relationship. The film depicted what it is like to be a secondary school student with brutal honesty. The casting was very thoughtful and I left the theatre a little nostalgic given the 2002 aesthetic.
Big gulp. What have you been doing for the month of January? Do you gravitate towards films or more wintery hobbies?
The Snow Man
What I like about this recipe:
Walnuts: known for their loads of health benefits, from reducing inflammation to improving moods. My favourite part is the buttery taste when they are perfectly toasted.
Pumpkin Pie Spice: allows me to skip the step of combining cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg together. There are some haters out there, but I think this dislike stems from the pumpkin spice latte phenomenon. The convenience and flavour combination works!
Rolled Oats: again, loaded with health benefits (prevents constipation, nutrient rich, assists with weight loss). More importantly, they are satisfying and help maintain that full feeling.
Less Sugar: The granola is not overly sweet as it is only sweetened with maple syrup.
Feel Good Walnut Granola
Makes: 6 cups of granola
Time: Prep time (15 minutes) + baking time (35 minutes)
½ cup (100 g) coconut oil
½ cup ( maple syrup
4 cups (400 g) rolled oats
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp fine grained sea salt
2 cups (100 g) walnut pieces
½ cup (60 g) dried cranberries (unsweetened or sweetened with applejuice)
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a small saucepan, slowly melt the coconut oil. Stir in the maple syrup. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl mix together the oats, spice and sea salt. Pour the oil and maple mixture over top of the oat mixture and stir well. Spread the granola onto the prepared cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven and mix in the walnut pieces. Return to the oven for 15 minutes (or 20 minutes if you like it a little toastier). Remove from oven, mix in the cranberries and allow to cool at room temperature. Store in a glass container for 1-2 weeks.
Serve with yoghurt, fresh or frozen blueberries or raspberries, hemp hearts and bee pollen.
Adapted from Make Your Own Rules Diet by Tara Stiles