I love waking up on a Saturday. It’s a day fat with possibilities and the first possibility I think of is breakfast. Whereas in the week breakfast is a hurried and standing affair, at the weekend I can sit down and enjoy it. And often it turns into a two-stage process: something fruity with tea then something more substantial with coffee, like pan con tomate, or bacon and egg at brunchtime. My current favourite for the first stage is granola.
I first discovered this in the States, at a place called the Big Sky Bakery in Baltimore, and I became quite obsessed with buying bags of the stuff to eat as a snack. (By the end of my two years there I had gained ten kilos which was no surprise…) And then I forgot about it until last year when I came across a Bill Granger recipe for granola with roasted plums and yogurt. I serve it to everyone who comes to stay now, and my sister’s children still talk about it being the ‘best breakfast ever’. I rarely bother with roasting fruit just for myself, but I do make the granola every week. It’s really easy and it makes waking up for the rest of the week just that little bit more bearable.
Adapted from Bill Granger’s Granola
Enough for a family of five or six for one breakfast, or ten days’ worth for one person…
You will need:
125g unsalted butter
60g brown sugar
2tsp ground cinnamon
300g rolled oats (I never know what ‘rolled’ actually means; I use porridge oats)
150g skin-on almonds, roughly chopped (I’ve also used walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts with equal success)
A large flat baking tray
1. Preheat the oven to 150C/gas 2.
2. Cover the baking tray with a sheet of baking parchment
3. Put the butter, sugar and cinnamon in a large saucepan (you’ll be mixing all the ingredients in it, so big enough for the oats and nuts too).
4. Place the saucepan over a low heat, and stir the butter, sugar and cinnamon until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.
5. Take the pan off the heat, add the oats and nuts to the pan and stir until evenly coated with the butter-sugar mixture.
6. Spread the mixture evenly on the baking tray, in a thin layer.
7. Bake for about 30 minutes until lightly browned. (I tend to take the tray out of the oven after 15 minutes and turn the granola over a bit before putting it back so that it browns all over).
8. Allow to cool before serving/eating, unless you have several impatient children staying with you…
9. Store in an airtight container.
Right now I wake up to it with English strawberries and Greek yogurt. And then I can start thinking about what to have with my coffee later…