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Monthly Archives: August 2014

vanilla almond granola with cranberriesoh, granola. granola is one of those foods that makes you think of earthy crunchy healthy people who probably eat paleo and go to yoga at least 4 times a week. i mean, there’s a reason people can be referred to as “granola” people. or, wait. did i just make that up? regardless, you know the sorts of people i mean, don’t you? the folks who wouldn’t dare each a bowl of lucky charms (aka, not me).

anyway, people love granola. i’d go as far as to say that granola is really in right now. top it with berries, eat it with yogurt, eat it with milk, snack on it…no matter how you’re consuming, granola is having a moment. or rather, it has been having a moment for the past few years. i too jumped on the yogurt and granola train a year or so back, eating it regularly for breakfast at my desk. but recently, i happened to take a look at the ingredient breakdown on the back of my supposedly healthy granola, and guess what? that ish was FULL of sugar. and other ingredients i couldn’t pronounce. and that mystified me, because granola is basically just oats and nuts and maybe some oil/sweetener, right? and dried fruit if you’re feeling fancy? so what was up with ingredients i couldn’t pronounce?

NOT COOL, GRANOLA.

so recently on a weekend, when i was sitting at home being lame while others were out having fun and doing the things that so-called normal late twenty-somethings do, i made my own. after doing a bit of googling, it turned out i was right: granola is basically just oats + sweetener + nuts + a lil bit of oil + spices + dried fruit/chocolate. EASY PEASY.

i decided i wanted vanilla granola with dried cranberries and toasted almonds (i’d picked up the latter two ingredients at whole foods recently and needed to use them for something). so i tossed some oats into a bowl with the almonds, then melted down some coconut oil, and mixed it into the oats along with some vanilla extract, some maple sugar for sweetness, and some cinnamon for shits and giggles. and guess what? the results were DELISH.

let’s break it down, shall we?*

*here’s the thing about granola: so long as you coat your oats and add some sweetener, you’re pretty much guaranteed goodness. so don’t worry too much about measuring cups.

VANILLA ALMOND GRANOLA WITH DRIED CRANBERRIES

what you’ll need:

– approximately 2.5 -3 cups of oats

– pinch of salt

– 1/4 cup maple syrup

– 1/2 cup melted coconut oil

– 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (pour liberally, folks)

– 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

– 1/2 cup dried cranberries

what you’ll do:

preheat your oven to 300, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper (or a silicon baking mat, if you’ve got one).

melt down your coconut oil, and pour it over your oats. toss to mix. add your maple syrup, vanilla extract, and cinnamon, and toss a bit more. toss in your almonds.

go ahead and do a little taste test if you want. ain’t no raw eggs in here. add some more sweetener, vanilla, cinnamon, etc, if you’d like.

once your granola has passed the taste test, spread them out on the baking sheets you’ve prepared. don’t overload your sheets – a thin layer is what’s going to ensure your granola is cooked evenly.

bake for about 45 minutes, tossing every 15. when done, let your granola cool completely. the air will help to create that crunchiness that granola is known for.

once cool, toss with your dried cranberries – or any dried fruit, really! or even chocolate chips if you’re feeling really crazy – and store in an airtight container. granola should stay fresh for about 3 weeks at room temperature.

HAPPY EATING! i like to eat mine with fresh fruit on top and honey greek yogurt on the bottom, as evidenced here.

 

 

 

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happyweekendoh my god, you guys, we made it! it’s FINALLY friday, and amazingly, it’s also august 1st. when did THAT happen? i’m not exactly summer’s biggest fan, but i have to admit, june and july were pretty darn good this year. new york has been mercifully spared the sort of humid, sweaty days we’re usually doled out during the summer months, and instead, we’ve gotten lots of sunshine, plenty of low humidity, and some seriously incredible beach days. i’ve got a really wonderful august coming up, so i can’t really complain that we’re more than halfway through the sunshine season. next weekend, i head to the beautiful beaches of rhode island for a family vacation, and i’ll be gone through wednesday. a nice little break, with lots of ice cream eating and suntanning to be done. then i’m back at work for two days before heading out to montauk for the first time. back to work for another week, and then off to the dirty jerz, where friends and i have rented a gorgeous victorian for a long weekend of debauchery and relaxation in good ol’ asbury park.

and then, just like that, it’ll be labor day, and boom, summer’s basically over. time flies when you’re tan and happy!

on a less jubilant note, i’ve been dealing with some annoying things on the job front (freelance, not day job), and i’ve been trying my very best not to let that ish get me down, and to be the better person, but mostly, i’ve been feeling like this. i’m attempting to remember that money is just money, a job is just a job, and i don’t need either as much as i need respect.

so, now, back to the regularly scheduled programming. here’s some some stuff i liked on the interwebs this week:

on over-scheduling, and the invasion of busy.  louis ck said it best here.

this story of amazing customer service by warby parker made me smile. there are still good eggs out there, and good companies, too.

into the woods is going to be SO.FREAKING.GOOD. christmas day can’t come soon enough.

and, speaking of movies, how excited are we for gone girl?! one of my favorite reads over the past few years. (speaking of reading, check out my summer reading reccos here). the movie poster leaves a bit to be desired, no?

i want to live in this montauk beach house.

misty copeland’s underarmour ad is amazing. seriously, her bod. i can’t even deal! and also, this spot, in general – spots like this are the reason i wanted to work in advertising in the first place.

an interesting read on pushing yourself to the limit – does exercise have to hurt to work? i vote no, personally. or at least, not hurt hurt.

ps: fun things to shop for this week, including perfume that smells like a day at the beach.

what i want this week shopping list

ONE | TWO | THREE | FOUR | FIVE | SIX | SEVEN | EIGHT | NINE | TEN | ELEVEN | TWELVE | THIRTEEN | FOURTEEN

end of the season shopping, also known as SALE TIME, is my favorite kind of shopping. maybe this is my inner cheapskate coming out, but there’s really nothing like scoring a piece you’ve had your eye on for months at 60% off. the thrill of the hunt, i guess. men have hunting and gathering, we have shopping.

that might be the most superficial statement i’ve ever written. please forgive me.

this week’s shopping list is brought to you by three things: pieces i can bring to mexico, pieces i want in my apartment, and pieces to carry all the little pieces of my life (helllooo, tote bags). seriously, though, santa baby, can you shimmy that bar cart down the chimney to me? i’m sure hanukkah harry would be happy to help. i’ll leave you both some cookies, and some gelt for harry.

happy shopping, and happy august! holy moly, this summer is FLYING by.