I don’t know about the rest of you homemade-granola-makers-with-kids, but we end up with a fair quantity of leftover, soggy granola. Never all at the same time, mind you. A bit here, and a bit there. But it adds up.
Where it adds up at our house is in a pint jar in my freezer.
The idea of re-purposing the stuff came to me last fall and is one of those small life changes inspired by Riana. ‘That stuff is still perfectly good, albeit soggy.’ I said to myself one day. ‘I worked hard for that granola. There’s quality foodstuffs in there. Not to mention the milk.’ When I had collected a jar full, I used it in some bread.
The first few loaves were just regular bread. The granola wasn’t enough to make it seem sweet, there was only an occasional raisin. But after a few loaves I figured why not capitalize on the granola?
So I started adding in extra raisins and nuts to make a delicious morning bread, perfect for those of us who can’t handle granola for breakfast (which is to say– me. Ironic isn’t it that the granola maker doesn’t eat it? Don’t know why, I wish I could feel good eating granola in the morning. It’s so quick and easy, and I never feel like cooking. But it makes my tummy feel bad. Partly the milk and partly the undercooked grains I think.)
Yesterday, I tried “baking” my first granola bread in Trixie. And it came out stellar! Best bread yet in the multi-cooker. I don’t know if that’s because of the way I baked it, or the fact that I added 2 eggs maybe? Who knows.
Since I used the slow cooker function, any of y’all with one of those could do this recipe. Although, since Trix has a “brown” setting, I started it out on that for 10 minutes, and got a delightfully brown crust. When the bread was mostly set, I flipped it over to brown the top, so the whole loaf had a nice crust. Not bakery quality, mind you, but something to work yer teeth on.
Anyway, you know I’m not much of a recipe cook, but here’s approximately what I put in my bread yesterday.
Leftover Granola Bread
- 2 cups soggy leftover granola
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 Tablespoon yeast
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup sucanat
- 1 cup white bread flour
- 3 cups whole wheat
- 1/4 cup gluten flour
- 1 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 cup dried currants, raisins or any kind of dried fruit (I recently discovered the dried currants at Whole Foods. They’re not organic, but they’re only $2.99/lb! That’s a steal! I like them even better than raisins, which I’ve always found too sweet really…)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- drizzle of molasses
- good glug of oil
- splash of vanilla
Add more flour as necessary, I think I used another 1/2 cup of wheat, or was it one and a half...? I usually make fairly soft doughs, but since I figured this slow cooker loaf didn’t need any extra help in the ‘moist’ department, I made it a bit on the stiff side. This did make it a slow riser, so next time I think I’ll use a full tablespoon of yeast.
Note: This made a very large loaf! Since Trixie’s got, as I said before, “back” she was capable of… “accommodating” …such…. “proportions.” As you all well know, size does matter, so those of you with the standard sized crock pots had probably better cut this recipe in half.
Proceed as usual with mixing the dough. Set in your well greased insert/pot for the second rising, then “bake” on high. I’m guessing on that last part. Trix doesn’t have a high and low (another unfortunate feature I forgot to mention) and the single “slow cook” function must be low, because it takes a loooong time to cook stuff. So, as I mentioned before, I started it out on brown for 10 minutes, then turned it down to slow cook. For oh… about an hour and a half? I think. ish. When the loaf was somewhat set on top, but still not truly done, I flipped it over and “brown”ed the other side for another 10. Then I turned the cooker off, but left the bread in for another half hour. Got that?
I forgot to mention that I used a silicone mat under the loaf, to make getting it out really easy. It worked great. I got a set of four different silicone baking things at a garage sale for $5. I cut a round the size of Trixie’s bottom out of the cake “pan,” and it’s perfect.
You can also just bake things in a souffle dish or anything else that will fit in your cooker (oven proof of course). My first loaf I did in a stainless steel bowl, set in a couple inches of water. But that sure wasn’t gonna get me any kind of crust, and seemed like an unnecessary extra dish. If there’s one thing I can’t abide, it’s an extra dish! Even now that I have a new fangled washer machine thingy.
There’s still plenty of room for improvement, but I’m pretty happy with this bread all things considered. It’s really hitting the spot for breakfast lately, slathered with butter. I usually need something more substantial than toast for breakfast, but now that it’s Hot here again, toast feels about right. Especially when it has plenty of yummy nuts and dried currants in it!