I eat granola made with oats for breakfast every now and then. I love it with fresh strawberries from the farmer’s market. The store bought ones are extremely sugar for my liking. Hence I started to create my own version at home with whatever ingredients I find on my walk from pantry to stove top. Since there are no grains allowed on phase 1 of South beach diet, I eat couple of tablespoon of grain-free granola with milk or yogurt as a dessert before I retire to bed. On a hot summer day, (it was 101F couple of days back), it is so comforting to sit with a bowl of ice cold milk, drizzled with speckles of chocolatey granola and read a book or watch a movie. As the icy cold milk washes down my throat, the crunchy walnuts and almonds coated with cocoa and cinnamon leaves a happy note at the end of my tongue. It’s delicious. It’s addictive. It’s SBD friendly too!
Good thing about South beach diet book is that it carries close to ten recipes for dessert alone. I tweak a bit here and there and come up with my changes and likings. For instance, the original recipe for nutty granola from the book doesn’t include cocoa powder in the list. I used them because I love its taste and flavor it adds to my granola. Then, I changed the baking temperature as over the months, sometimes 30 minutes at 325F doesn’t really work for me. I have seen a similar recipe at Sylvie’s blog and you can follow her recipe too. Its made with chia seeds and no cinnamon. I made it in a large batch and stored in an airtight container to retain the freshness. They freeze pretty well too. You can freeze them for 2-3 months, you don’t have to thaw them, just throw the ice-cold nutty chunks over your yogurt or milk and eat right away!
In the South beach diet cookbook, it says that “This tasty topping is meant to be enjoyed in tablespoon size servings on top of non-fat or low fat yogurt or fat free cottage cheese or part-skim ricotta”. So be a good girl/boy and don’t end up finishing the entire bottle. I know, they are really addictive and no one can stop with just 1 or 2 tablespoon.
Nutty Granola From The South Beach Diet Cookbook
- 1 cup raw walnuts
- 1 cup raw almonds
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup pecans
- ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- ½ cup stevia
- 2 tbsp butter or trans free margarine
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp cinnamon optional
- Soak walnuts, almonds and pecans in water for 4-6 hours
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Drain and rinse the nuts and pat dry them using a kitchen towel.
- Pulse the nuts to a coarse form in food processor.
- In the meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Mix in the cocoa powder, vanilla essence and cinnamon. Stir to combine.
- Pour this chocolate mixture over the pulsed nuts and add sunflower seeds and salt. Stir well to combine and let the cocoa powder mix coat the nuts well.
- Cover the baking tray with parchment paper or foil. Spread chocolate nut mixture evenly over it.
- Bake at 200 degrees for about 4 hours straight. Remove and cool on a wire rack.
- I served mine with cold milk.