Foodie Friday: Guilt-Free, Gluten-Free Granola

It's a grey and dreary Fall day here at the Homestead.  So what better way to spend the morning then whipping up a batch of granola.  It's super easy and my recipe is nice and healthy too!  The thing I really love about making my own granola is that each time you make it ends up being a different creation.  Maybe you were out of this, or didn't have that, so you used those instead.  It really doesn't matter what you through in, it's always bound to be good.  And most of the time, that's how I roll...cooking with whatever is in the cupboard.  So for possibly the first time ever , I wrote down what I made today.  Hope you enjoy it!  And feel free to experiment and get creative.  As I am gluten-free, sugar-free and dairy/egg-free, there are none of those unpopular guys in this recipe.  But really, you don't need any of them anyways.  See for yourself!

Guilt-Free, Gluten-Free Granola

Ingredients: 

5 cups of Gluten-free Oats
1 cup of Spelt Flakes (mine were organic)
1 cup of Raw Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
1 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2  cup of toasted buckwheat groats (Kasha)
1/2 cup of almonds - coarsely chopped
1/2 cup of walnuts - coarsely chopped
1/2 cup of sunflower seeds
2 tsp of cinnamon
1 tsp of ginger
Pinch of salt
Sprinkle of Allspice
Sprinkle of ground Vanilla Bean
2 tbsp of Coconut Oil - melted
1/2  - 3/4 cup of Brown Rice Syrup - you can use maple syrup, agave etc. as a substitute

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl mix together all your dry ingredients until well blended.  Use your warming oven to melt your coconut oil in an oven proof dish.  Mix your melted coconut oil and brown rice syrup together and mix well.  Then add the mixture to your bowl of dry ingredients.  And mix it up.  This may take a bit of elbow grease, but you want to make sure all those awesome seeds, nuts and oats are coated in yummy, gooey goodness.  Pour your almost granola onto 2 baking sheets.  I like mined lined with parchment paper, but if you don't have any then simply grease the sheets with a little more coconut oil.
Bake for 12 minutes and then take them out and give them a good stir and then place them back in the oven some more.  You will need to repeat this a few times just until your granola is dried and slightly golden brown.  My batch took about 30 minutes overall. Once done, remove from the oven and let cool.  Then stir again to break up any delicious clumps.  And store in an air tight container.  This granola will last a few weeks in your cupboard if you don't eat it all before then.

This granola is great for breakfast as cereal or mixed into a yogurt.  Or why not stash a bit in your bag for an on the go snack?  It's even a great handmade gift served little mason jars tied with a bow.  The options are endless.  Add dried fruit if you like, take out the nuts, add some more spice or less, you choose...it's your granola!

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Tip Tuesday: DIY Apple Crumble Face Scrub

Recently I had the pleasure of collaborating with Michell Pino from Skana Spa in upstate New York for this latest DIY installment. Think of cool, crisp days, leaves falling and the smell of grandma's baking.

In celebration of the start of Fall, treat your self to a little decadence at home with our Apple Crumble Face Scrub.

Apple Crumble Face Scrub

Ingredients:

1/2 of an apple (well mashed, with skin, no core or seeds, or unsweetened applesauce would work too)
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons olive oil (you could also use sweet almond oil or melted coconut oil)
pinch of cinnamon

Instructions:

Leave the paste for 5 minutes in the bowl until oatmeal becomes soft and then gently (many people scrub a little to aggressively which can irritate skin) exfoliate your face massaging it for 1 or 2  minutes. Rinse with warm then cold water.  And voila!  A homemade, healthy face scrub that smells divine and tastes delicious!

I love incorporating oatmeal as its soothing to the skin and acts as an inflammatory. I also like it because it works well for a variety of skin types and does not cause irritation. The honey has astringent properties and also helps increase your skins healing abilities. The apple has a large quantity of anti-oxidants so it helps to keep your skin looking younger.  It also helps to balance the oil production and is great for hydrating.

Trying this scrub, I found it to be very soothing and hydrating.  My skin felt toned and moisturized and my pores and wrinkles (shhh...don't tell anyone) seemed to be minimized.  It is a little messy, so make sure you do it over the sink.  The recipe made enough for both me and my hubby to give ourselves a mini facial.

Before and After
Looking for more Autumn inspired beauty treatments?  Visit Skana Spa and check out their always tantalizing seasonal Spa offerings.


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