Dark Chocolate Granola

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Chocolate for breakfast – doesn’t that sound interesting enough! This delicious granola is every chocolate lovers dream come true. Make this scrumptious chocolate granola with just 11 basic ingredients and yes you’ll fall in love with it. Healthy, tasty, easy and all the good things you can think of. I am a complete coffee addict, period! I need my steaming cup of coffee to kick start my day. However this Dark Chocolate Granola is the only thing that can replace my coffee. It is super addictive and my new friend on the breakfast table. The secret to this granola is using the most premium chocolate available

The hide and seek of the chunks of dark chocolate in the chocolate-y granola is phenomenal. The nuttiness from the almonds and the tangy-ness from the berries all lends in beautifully to create a healthy breakfast and on the go snack. Try it and you’ll get addicted for sure!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 4 cups)

  • 2 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup mixed nuts, roughly chopped (I used 3/4 cup almonds and 1/4 cup walnuts)
  • 2 tbsp mixed seeds (I used pumpkin and melon seeds)
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup dried mixed berries
  • 4 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chunks (I used 72% dark chocolate)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 170 C for atleast 15 minutes. Line your baking sheet with parchment paper and keep aside.
  • In a bowl mix all the dry ingredients – oats, nuts, mixed seeds, chia seeds, dried berries, brown sugar and cocoa powder and keep aside. Make sure to mix it well so that the cocoa powder covers the entire mixture.
  • In another bowl whisk together butter, vanilla extract and honey until incorporated.
  • Now add the wet ingredients into the dry ones and mix it well until the dry ingredients are coated enough.
  • Now spread out the mixture on the baking sheet and put it to bake for 20 – 22 minutes
  • Around 10 minutes into baking, use a fork to just toss the granola mix so that it bakes evenly without burning and put it back into baking for 10 -12 minutes more.
  • Take it out from the oven and allow it to cool completely. Store it in an airtight container and you can use it for 7 – 10 days.

Enjoy!

 

 

Granola Breakfast Tarts

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Its time to awaken your taste buds and kickstart your morning in a healthy, hearty way! I love to have a sumptuous breakfast, the kind where the entire breakfast table is adorned with fresh juices, freshly baked breads, brewed coffee, perfectly cooked eggs and a beautiful breakfast dessert tart. Oh gosh! I am already dreaming about it. Very rarely my breakfast table looks so full that I am spoilt for choices. All I try to do is make one or the other dish of my dreamy breakfast table on and off. Once such dish is the fabulous breakfast granola tart.

Fancy to look but simple to make, these tarts can appease your sweet cravings in a nutritious way. Loaded with heavenly flavours, these tarts makes mornings happier and merrier. The stunning granola crust, the fresh juicy fruits and luscious yogurt – all come together beautifully. Indulgent but definitely healthy. So just when you were craving dessert for breakfast or breakfast for dessert, we got you a solution!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 3 – 4 inch tarts)

For the tart:

  • 1 1/2 cup quick cooking oats (I used Quaker oats)
  • 3 /4 cup finally chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup finelly chopped hazelnuts
  • 75 grams unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature + extra for greasing the tin
  • 1 tbsp mixed sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

For the filling and topping:

  • 180 grams plain Greek Yogurt (I used Epigamia Greek Yogurt)
  • 3 tbsp agave nectar (you can use honey instead)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp black chia seeds
  • 3/4 cup pomegranate arils
  • 1 small green apple, thinly sliced

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METHOD:

  • Preheat the oven to 160C for atleast 20 minutes. Grease the tart tins slightly with melted butter and keep aside.
  • Meanwhile take all the dry ingredients for tart crust – Oats, Sesame Seeds, Chia Seeds, Walnuts, Hazelnuts and Cinnamon – and mix it in a bowl.
  • In another bowl whisk together melted butter and vanilla extract and then add it to the dry ingredient bowl.
  • Using a spoon mix the entire granola mix. Now transfer 1/3rd of the mixture to one tart shell. Using the back of your spoon press the granola mix towards the edges of the shell. Make sure that there are no gaps left.
  • Put these tart shells to bake in the oven for 18 – 20 minutes.
  • Once done, using the back of your spoon, press down the granola mix and then allow the tart to cool completely in the tart shell.

For the filling:

  • While the tart shell is cooling down, we can make the filling.
  • In a bowl take greek yogurt, agave nectar (or honey) and vanilla extract and whisk it using the wire whisk.

For assembling:

  • Once the tart base has completely cooled down, demould it carefully.
  • Divide the yogurt mixture between the 3 tart shells and fill it completely.
  • Garnish with pomegranate arils, green apple slices, chia seeds and any leftover granola and serve!

 

Banana Bread Granola – 100th Post Celebration!

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Hello folks! I can’t believe that I have penned down 100 of my favorite recipes and shared my culinary stories with all if you. The love I have got from each of you is completely overwhelming. It is so gratifying to see the blog grow from a single viewer to a community of such amazing people who appreciate my efoorts and my love for food. I can’t thank each of you enough for your unending faith in me.

Coming to the 100th blog post celebration, means something special was cooking in my kitchen. A dish that invokes memories of my first baking experience and has become my family (and definitely my lil one’s) favorite – Quick Banana Bread. However this is not a post about the classic banana brad but something which is healthy, super easy and unquestionably delicious – Banana Bread Granola!

When you feel like munching something, a bowl of this granola with or without yogurt is all you will need to satisfy your hunger pang as well as your sweet craving. The aroma of banana bread flavors wafting through the entire house is therapeutic. The warmth of the spices and the infused banana flavor makes it quite addictive.

Just as we enjoyed this super bowl of granola, make a BIG batch for yourself because I bet this will get over in no time!

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RECIPE

METHOD: (Makes 3 cups)

  • 1 3/4 cups jumbo oats
  • 2 tbsp walnuts
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 15 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tbsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin/melon seeds
  • 1/8 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup (you can use agave syrup or honey)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 medium sized banana, mashed

METHOD:

  • Preheat the oven to 165 C for atleast 15 minutes. Meanwhile line a baking tray with parchment paper and keep aside
  • In a bowl add jumbo oats, cinnamon powder, nutmeg powder, chia seeds, walnuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds, salt and brown sugar and mix well so that the ingredients are evenly spread.
  • In another bowl add maple syrup and melted butter and whisk it. Add vanilla extract and whisk the mixture.
  • Now add the mashed bananas and mix it well.
  • Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients bowl and using a spatula mix it well so that all the ingredients are well coated and evenly spread.
  • Spread the entire mix onto the baking tray and spread evenly. Put it in the oven to bake for 23- 25 minutes.
  • Around 10 minutes into baking, take the baking sheet out and using a fork just mix the entire granola mixture to avoid burning of the ingredients.
  • Put it back into the oven and allow it to bake for another 13 – 15 minutes.
  • Take it out of the oven, fluff it using a fork and allow the mixture to cool down completely. Only once it is cooled will the mixture get crunchy.
  • Store it in an airtight container upto 2 weeks.

Voila!

Crunchy Berry Breakfast Granola

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Say hello to my new breakfast friend – Crunch Berry Granola. Being incredibly summer here, I like my post-workout morning breakfast to be a bowl of chilled yogurt topped with a generous amount of homemade granola. The big beautiful flavors from the granola is a perfect example of yummy and healthy food.

An easy recipe which you can mess around and cook with your lil one. While making the granola, my entire house was filled with a heavenly aroma. The concoction of crunchy toasted granola and the nutty almonds is studded with dried berries and chia seeds and spice mix. The mild sweetness from the agave nectar (Yes, you can use honey!) was deeply satisfying. The textural pop from this homemade granola makes you crave for it during breakfast and even mid day snacking each day!

Seeing my lil one enjoy this granola completely swooned me. Its simple, its comforting and yummier than store bought granola. So just when you thought of going healthy and bringing some variety to your breakfast table, this recipe is at your call and will become your absolute favorite in the kitchen.

Feel free to play with different flavors you love!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes around 3 cups)

  • 1.5 cups of oats (I used Quaker oats)
  • 35 grams slivered almonds
  • 1/3 cup of dried berries (I used dried cranberries and blueberries)
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 20 grams unsalted butter, melted and brought to room temperature
  • 45 ml agave nectar (you can use honey)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  •  pinch of salt (eliminate this if you are using salted butter)

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METHOD:

  • Line a baking tray with parchment/ baking paper and keep aside. Preheat the oven to 150C for atleast 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile mix oats, slivered almonds, dried berries and chia seeds in a bowl and keep aside.
  • In another bowl mix melted butter,  vanilla extract, orange zest, cinnamon powder, salt and agave nectar and whisk it well to ensure all the ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Now pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and with the spoon mix it so that no clumps are formed. I like using my hands and making sure all the elements are well coated and no lumps are formed.
  • Now transfer the mixture on to the baking tray and spread out evenly. Put it in the oven and bake at 150C for 18 -20 minutes.
  • After 10 minutes take the baking tray out and using a spoon stir the entire mixture so that nothing is over done or burnt. Put it back in the oven.
  • Once done take out the baking sheet from the oven. The mixture won’t be crunchy now. Allow it to cool.
  • As the mixture cools, it becomes crunchy. Transfer it to an airtight container and you can store it upto 2 weeks in the fridge.

Happy eating!

 

Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cake

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It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been planning to bake a Pineapple Upside Down Cake and everyday ended with moving it to tomorrows to-do list. However, after so much procrastination, I managed to bake one and here it is on my blog for all you people!

This petite pineapple upside down cake is simply adorable. Not only is it decadent but it pretty to look at so much so that you want to dig in for another (big) bite. The cake screams pineapple and reignites tropical flavors on your palate. I remember as child I was never aware of an upside down cake. My only exposure with pineapple in a dessert was pineapple gâteaux, which my entire family looked forward to over weekends. And this classic PINEAPPLE upside down cake has won my heart over again! The tropical fruitiness from the pineapple and the caramelization from the butter and brown sugar adds deep bold flavors into the cake.

Ornate the cake with fresh cherries, lemon zest infused whipped cream and a few basil leaves, it leaves a rich lingering effect. So if you don’t worry about those extra calories, its time to put your apron on and bake this scrumptious cake for pure divine indulgence!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENT: (Makes 4 – 4.5 inch ramekin cakes)

  • 250 grams all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 150 grams granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoon baking powder
  • zest from 1 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 125 grams oil
  • 170 grams brown sugar
  • 60 grams unsalted butter+ extra for greasing
  • 8 pineapple slices (fresh/canned, I used canned)
  • cherries, for garnishing (optional)
  • basil leaves, for garnishing (optional)
  • 1 tbsp caramel sauce, for garnishing (optional)
  • whipped cream, for garnishing (optional)
  • 1 tbsp granola, for garnishing (optional)

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METHOD:

  • Preheat your oven to 180C for atleast 15 minutes. Meanwhile grease the ramekins with generous amount of butter and keep aside.
  • In a saucepan take butter and brown sugar and stir it over medium heat, until sugar and butter have dissolved.
  • Keep stirring it to avoid it from burning and once you see slight bubbles on the side remove it from the heat.
  • Transfer this mixture evenly between the four greased ramekins.
  • Take the canned pineapple slices, dab it with kitchen towel and arrange it on top of the sugar mixture in the ramekins evenly. You can also place a few cherry pieces.
  • Meanwhile using an electric beater, beat oil and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and beat it until its fully incorporated.
  • Add the lemon zest and vanilla extract and fold the mixture.
  • In another bowl sieve all purpose flour and baking powder together and keep aside.
  • Now add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, alternating with milk and ending with the flour mixture.
  • Fold it gently until all the ingredients have been well incorporated.
  • Transfer the batter evenly into each ramekin (filling only upto 3/4th its volume) and put it to bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Once baked, allow the cake to cool down, invert it upside down on a platter and here you have your pineapple upside down cake.
  • You can garnish it with whipped cream and basil combination or brush a layer of caramel sauce on the plate and garnish it with granola.

ENJOY!

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No Bake Granola Bars

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Granola bars have become my absolute favorite snack. They satiate my sweet cravings in a healthy way. These happiness health food bars have solved my problem of binge eating to a great extent. Its a complete powerhouse to keep you going through the day.

Living in San Francisco, I ended up hiking a lot. Beautiful weather, picturesque vista points and great company. Some healthy and mess free snack was so important and this is when I resorted to granola bars from Trader Joes. They were delicious and my favorite. Moving back to India I started missing them especially during my snack time. So I decided to make my version of granola bars, mixing some ingredients that I love and that are easily available. Homemade bars are indeed so much more delicious.

With every minute being precious at morning, I fail to cook lavish breakfast for my family. Finally these granola bars have come handy. You can have it as your morning energy meal or your afternoon snack with a cup of coffee, its wholesome and super healthy. Keep tinkering with different ingredients you have at your home, the possibilities are going to be endless and the result – some marvelously yummy granola bars!

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RECIPE

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 6 – 8 bars)

  • 1/2 cup + 6 tbsp rolled oats (I used Quaker oats, toasted lightly)
  • 2/3 cup slivered almonds
  • 3 tbsp dark choco chips
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract

METHOD:

  • In a bowl mix peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract and keep aside.
  • In another bowl mix lightly toasted rolled oats, almonds, chia seeds, cinnamon, and salt. Mix well.
  • Now add the wet and the dry ingredients together. The mixture might be very difficult to work with since it might be dry but mix it well.
  • Lastly when all the above ingredients are well incorporated, add the choco chips and mix well.
  • Line a baking dish/ tin with parchment paper with sufficient parchment paper on the sides so that we can life up the mixture later using the parchment paper.
  • Transfer the granola mixture to the baking dish and press it down firmly so that no gaps are left in the corner.
  • Allow it to set in the refrigerator for atleast 2 hours or until firm and it holds its shape.
  • Once set, lift the entire mixture using the extra parchment paper in the sides. Using a sharp knife cut it into bars of even size and enjoy!

NOTES:

  • Put the oats on a baking tray lined with baking paper and toast it for 7 – 8 minutes at 150C in a preheated oven.
  •  You can use white chocolate chips  instead of dark chocolate chips
  • You can use flax seeds instead of chia seeds.