First things first, there are two things to note about my radio silence– I didn’t get blogger burnout and I didn’t fall off a cliff. Instead, I’ve spent the last month exploring Barcelona in search of the perfect croquettes, fallen in love all over again for real traditional piri piri in Portugal and danced away the weekend at T in the Park with my family, tiny bottles of rosé in hand. It’s been the most amazing, recharging ‘I feel like me again’ holiday that I have been on in some time, and having returned to the fog and rain of Aberdeen with potentially tighter skinny jeans, it’s safe to say the past month hasn’t been the healthiest.
Although breakfast these past few weeks has consisted of napolitanas, waffles and bacon, the return to cloudier climes called for a little balance to offset the indulgence, so what better meal to start with than the first of the day? A Saturday morning cupboard rummage ensued and soon I was lightly toasting almonds in butter (balance, I told you), adding fistfuls of chopped dried apricots into porridge oats and stirring in a sweet and sticky butterscotch-esque sauce to create a rather kick ass ‘home from the holiday’ granola. It’s sweet but not sickly – eat it by the fistful like I *might* have done watching episodes of Veep (new television obessesion) or, more traditionally, with spoonfuls of natural yoghurt. It’s getting back into the swing of life without a (warm) beach on your doorstep, the chatter of Castilian in the streets or your favourite band playing just a short walk away in a field. It’s getting back to breakfast, but easing ourselves in with a little caramelised sweetness. Hey, summer hasn’t disappeared yet.
- 40g unsalted butter
- 200g almonds, roughly chopped
- 100g soft light brown sugar
- 4 tbsp honey
- 270g porridge oats
- 170g dried apricots, chopped (this is easiest done with kitchen scissors)
- 70g pistachios
- 4 tbsp pumpkin seeds
- 1 tbsp poppy seeds
- Preheat the oven to 170oc/150oc fan and line a large baking sheet with baking parchment. Over a low heat, melt the butter in a frying pan and once crackling, add the chopped almonds, stirring to coat. Stir occasionally for around five minutes until the nuts are fragrant then turn the heat to low and stir in the sugar and honey. Stir to combine until the sugar dissolves then remove from the heat.
- In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and add the caramelised almonds, stirring to ensure the oats are all coated – you can do this by hand if the mix has cooled slightly. Tip onto the baking sheet and spread in one even layer. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, removing to stir the granola then baking for a further ten minutes until golden. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tray then transfer to an airtight container. Serve with natural yoghurt.