COME BACK, SCRATCHBREAD!
SCRATCHbread closed last fall, devastating all of us fortunate enough to be regulars. Its owner/chef/baker, Matthew Tilden, let us know through a heartfelt post on Facebook that he couldn't take it anymore, running a small business with no partners was ruining his life and health and he needed a break. We immediately rushed down and bought a bunch of stuff and said goodbye. Matthew left on a meandering road trip to cook with friends and get some perspective. He's been sending notes back to his fans via a GoFundMe page. Please support his cause there because he's writing a cookbook and we all can benefit from his ideas. Also, he says he will come back and try to reopen SCRATCH if his campaign is fully funded. I only have one SCRATCHbread cinnamon roll left in my freezer, so we better get to it!
Below the photos is a granola recipe from Matthew, written for his mother, to help her get back on track with healthy eating. This is definitely advice we all need.
I have to admit something, I’m just not the greatest son in the world; But, i always mean well. Passing through my mother's house can be a challenge, and also the greatest fun. Food is always the focal point, but when I learned how to cook, I also learned how to manage my cravings, and take control over my health. My Mother and I have always battled the dreaded roller coaster of running from our own food weaknesses.
When stopping by this time, I noticed my mother needed a serious intervention of what was in her refrigerator and pantry, it was a processed food mecca in there. After a few bottles of wine and some serious pep talks she allowed me to re-organize her entire kitchen (!!).
This recipe is my first step in getting Moms to start a better daily regiment, right outta bed, but also how to indulge with a smarter approach. This granola can play that role with its dark chocolate, coconut, dried fruit and nuts (GF). It's packed with good sustainable energy and heart healthy benefits. So I've made a deal, eat some of this, and then I’ll teach her how I make an amazing ice cream to go with it.
I’ll keep you posted.
1 ½ cup mixed nuts
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup coconut oil
1 cup dried fruit*
4 tablespoons maple sugar*
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 ⅓ tablespoons mesquite honey
3 tablespoons whole flax seeds
3 tablespoons ground chia seeds
¼ teaspoon coarse sea salt
½ cup dark chocolate
Pre-heat the oven to 320° Fahrenheit. Melt coconut oil in the microwave, in the sun, or on the stovetop until liquid and warm (it does not need to be hot). Set aside 2 tablespoons of maple sugar, coarse sea salt and dark chocolate. Thoroughly mix all other ingredients in a bowl and then spread onto a parchment lined sheet pan. Spread evenly across tray, making sure not to flatten it into a smooth surface. Sprinkle reserved maple sugar and salt on top of warm granola. Bake, untouched, for 15 minutes. Using a spatula, break up and stir granola. Redistribute the granola evenly over the sheet pan and bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, place on a cooling rack, and sprinkle the chocolate on top to melt. Let cool for 15 minutes, then place into the fridge for an additional 15 minutes, or until it is cold and breaks off into chunks. Break up the granola by lifting the parchment paper and folding both sides towards each other, or alternatively, using the spatula. To store, place in an airtight jar.
Mixed nuts: Any combination you have or like will work, the one I use has a little bit of everything.
Maple sugar: Available at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, or any store with a good baking section. If unavailable, you can substitute cane sugar, just reduce the amount by a pinch or two because cane sugar is sweeter.
Sea salt: Can be any coarse salt you like, I use Maldon.
Dark chocolate: Anything 68% or higher will work. I like 80% because it tastes more robust and deeper in flavor. Use what you like best, the lower the percentage, the sweeter it will be.
Rolled oats: Not using quick oats will give the granola more chew, but any type of rolled oat will work.
Mesquite honey: Can be substituted with any honey or agave if unavailable
Flax and chia seeds: These are incredibly good for you, but if all you have are sesame, sunflower, or pumpkin seeds, use those. I like to grind a portion of the seeds to act as a binder.
Dried fruit: I used raisins and cranberries, but anything you like will work. Pack the cup when measuring.