Sunday, January 31, 2010

Makin' It From Scratch #5 - Breakfast

Homemade granola with almonds & dried cranberries

I'm a huge, huge fan of breakfast. So, here are a few various made-from-scratch recipes for breakfast wonderfulness.

1. Granola

Granola is so expensive, so I think it is totally worth the time and effort to make it yourself.
Here is a recipe for Granola that I've tried and tested myself many times. My toddler loves it and I think it makes a very impressive gift. :-)

It's also been fun making up variations like Banana Walnut (adding dried banana chips), Maple Pecan (I exchange part of the honey with real maple syrup), etc. Check out the flavorings at the store (like banana or maple) to see what flavors of your own you can create. The add-ins are endless. Just be sure that if you're using dried fruit, do not add the fruit in until after the granola is done baking. Otherwise the fruit turns into rocks.

2. Pancake Mix

I love homemade pancakes. The kind from a box mix or the freezer section just don't compare. Here are a few mixes you can make yourself.

- A Multi-Grain type of mix (I would exchange the corn flake crumbs for cornmeal)
- Plain Pancake Mix
- Pancake Mix using Whole Wheat Flour

One idea is to make and freeze your own pancakes and waffles ahead of time. I've done this before and it is so much cheaper, tastier and convenient than store bought frozen varieties - after the initial making of all those pancakes anyway. We just pull a few from the bag and pop ours in the toaster or the microwave in the morning and they're awesome!

It's important to make sure they're cooled all the way before freezing them in a gallon storage bag and to double wrap them to avoid freezer burn/frost. (I also add frozen red currents to the batter before cooking if I have them. You could try adding dried blueberries too!)

3. Biscuit Quick Mix

Mmmm! I love biscuits. The great thing about biscuits is that they're so versatile. I make biscuits for biscuits & gravy, egg sandwiches (keeps my craving down for the fast food kind), biscuits with jam - whatever!

I usually make mine using butter, but if you'd like to have a Biscuick-type mix ready on hand, you can make your own using shortening.

Utah Quick Mix*

Makes 29 cups:
5 lbs. flour - about 20 cups (You can probably exchange a portion of white flour for wheat.)
3/4 cup double-acting baking powder
2 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. salt
4 cups shortening (does not require refrigeration)
2 3/4 cups non-fat dry milk

Makes 13 cups:
9 cups flour
1/3 cup double-acting baking powder
4 tsp. salt
1 3/4 cups shortening
1 3/4 cups non-fat dry milk

Stir baking powder, non-fat dry milk, and salt into the flour. Cut fat into flour mixture until all particles of fat are thoroughly coated and mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. This can be done with a pastry blender, fork or electric mixer.

Measuring mix for recipes: Do not sift mix. Stir lightly before measuring. Lift lightly into cup and level with a straight edge (like a knife).

Storage: When deciding how much mix to make, consider how quickly it will be used and if you have a large enough container to make and store 29 cups. Store in a tightly covered container, at room temperature for up to six weeks.

Basic Biscuits

Makes 18 - 2 1/2" biscuits:
3 cups Utah Quick Mix
2/3 cup water

Makes 6 - 2 1/2" biscuits:
1 cup Utah Quick Mix
1/4 cup water

Heat oven to 450ºF. Mix Utah Quick Mix and water together until a soft dough is formed. Knead dough 10-12 strokes on lightly floured surface. Do not overknead or the dough will get tough. Roll 1/2-inch thick. Cut biscuits with a biscuit cutter or glass turned upside down, dipped in flour, or pat into a rectangle, and cut into squares. Bake on ungreased shiny baking sheet 10-15 minutes.

Variations: Add 1/4 cup grated cheese, 2 Tbsp. snipped fresh parsley, or other chopped herbs or raisins to mix before water is added and mix as above.

*These recipes are taken from a booklet "Utah Quick Mix" published by the Utah State University Extension Office. (Family Nutrition Program Publication #102)

There are a lot of quick mix recipes out there, so if you don't like this one very well, I'm sure you can find another version.

Good luck and happy breakfast!


Katie said...

I love this homestead blog of yours! I've been trying to do more of my own mixes and from-scratch cooking lately. I tried your instant oatmeal. It was delicious and easy! Once I use up my store bought packets I won't be buying any more.

j@nAe said...

I make homemade granola, too. LOVE IT! My recipe is really, really similar to yours (minus the coconut and maybe some minor alterations in amounts). So yummy! I love to eat it with vanilla yogurt rather than milk. It feels like a treat, and yet it's so healthy!

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