I’m definitely in holiday mode, not cooking mode. Truth be told, there’s not a lot of baking or cooking going on when there’s itineraries to think about, travel forums to peruse, and how to pack 35 days of clothing & toiletries into one small and light carry-on pack. We were lucky to find a super cheap flight to Frankfurt, so unfortunately we won’t be flying or heading into London or the UK at all. But there’s lots of other great countries to explore. Our super flexible and very rough journey will take us to: Frankfurt > Koblenz > Cologne > Luxembourg > Ghent > Bruges > Brussels > Antwerp > Amsterdam > cycling around Holland > Berlin > Vilnius > Kaunas before we fly back into Frankfurt and back home to Vancouver. Any more tips and suggestions about what to see/do/eat while in Europe are more than welcome!
We leave for Frankfurt on Sunday and I’m trying to only buy groceries one day at a time so that nothing goes to waste while we’re on holiday. It’s a sad day when my fridge holds only yogurt, coffee cream, beer, mustard, pickles, almond butter, maple syrup and miso paste. So when I wanted to make something for breakfast, I had to raid the cupboard for inspiration. I’ve made granola many times before using variations on the same recipe, but I decided to forgo the healthy-ish granola of my past and try for something a bit more treat-like this time around. While the results were sweeter than my regular granola, I’m sure this is still much better than the store-bought granolas found on the shelves of your local supermarket. It not only makes a good breakfast tossed with some yogurt and fresh fruit or turned into cereal in a bowl of skim milk, but it tastes good just eating it out of hand as a mid-afternoon snack. I think the next time I make this, I’ll sub in just regular ol’ peanut butter for the almond butter since peanut butter makes more of a flavour impact. Regardless of changes, this recipe is a keeper and a great start to a busy day.
vanilla almond granola
4 c old-fashioned oats
1 c sliced almonds
2 T flax seed
3 T brown sugar
1/4 t salt
1/8 t cinnamon
1/3 c vegetable oil
1/4 c honey
1 T almond butter
1 packet of vanilla sugar (or just 2 T of white sugar)
4 t vanilla extract
1. Preheat to 300°F. Mix the first 6 ingredients in large bowl. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine oil, honey, and sugar. Stir honey mixture until it just begins to bubble. Remove from heat and stir in the almond butter and vanilla. Once the almond butter melts, pour the hot liquid over the oats and stir well until throughly mixed.
2. Spread granola on a large rectangular baking sheet or pan. Bake until golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely. Break apart and store in an airtight container.
one of the best things i ate in Amsterdam were the fries from big trucks. The fries were good but the various sauces were better. beyond ketchup. way beyond.
Also, Edam is a place in Holland! You can take a city bus from Amsterdam to the cheese market in Edam (its held on Thursdays I think) and have Edam Cheese and many other kinds of scrumptious cheeses. Too bad you can’t make it to the UK. You could follow up the trip to Edam with a trip to Cheddar, England. (I’ve always wanted to have a cheese tour through Europe.)
oooh, have a lovely vacation – you’ll definitely be traveling to some of my favorite European cities :0)
Bon Voyage mon ami!
I’m looking forward to reading all about your trip and ogling at your photos too!
32 days!!! woweee…I’m jealous!
I could only take 2 weeks for my vacation. Nevertheless, I’d gladly take two weeks, over no vacation at all…
I’m taking off next Friday so I’ll be back before you.
Will you be posting on your blog while in Europe?
Love almond butter!! I used it as a base once and made gravy with mushrooms from it…sounds gross but it tasted like real gravy.
Your granola looks very yummy. I will try to make it over the next few days as I too, am cutting back on the supermarket bulk purchases.
Have a safe trip and eat well!
Gah, I’m so jealous. You’re going everywhere I haven’t been in Europe, besides amazing Amsterdam.
I’ve wanted to make granola for quite a while but never got around to it. And for some reason I never really thought about eating it everyday instead of eating cereal, though I realize how stupid that sounds. Just one of those obvious things you don’t realize. I was just thinking recently that I need to find a healthier cereal (currently I eat Vector and add almonds), but what I really need to do is make this granola! So thank you so much for this post as it will propel me into having a healthier breakfast! I love your instructions for the original granola.
well, I can´t help you with any of it, but your route sounds great, and I hope you really enjoy it. next time, southern europe, and then I´ll give you coffee and churros for a treat breakfast.
I’ve been checking both your blogs daily and am always glad when you have a new post. Enjoy your trip! Wow! I hope you’ll be posting, even a little, from away.
Bon Voyage from Nova Sotia
I’m about to take my first trip abroad so I can tell how excited you must be, sweetie!
That granola looks delicious, too.
I used to live near Cologne, and one of the most lovely things to do when the weather’s nice is to pack up a picnic and go sit at one of the many parks on the Rhein. You shouldn’t have a problem picking up yummy food and bread (try Graubrot or Bauernbrot) at any of the open-air markets in the city.
Also, don’t miss the Dom – it is truly breathtaking and is a good spot to cool off if it’s hot outside.
And drink plenty of Kölsch, the local beer. I miss it now that I’m living up in Hamburg.
Oh, and for a fantastic fattening treat, pick up some Reibekuchen (potato pancakes) from one of the street vendors. Make sure they’re made fresh for you.
As far as Berlin goes, you can eat fabulous food for dirt cheap. One of the best places to get a hummus sandwich is a Middle Eastern Imbiss (around the corner from the British Council, in a building with a supermarket) across from the Hackesche Höfe in Berlin-Mitte. And try a Berliner Weisse – it’s beer mixed with a fruit syrup. Sounds disgusting, but it’s actually very refreshing.
Oh my gosh, I’m so excited for you! I hope the two of you have the most amazing time. Can’t wait to hear about it. Have fun!!!
Wow – what a great little trip you have planned!!! Have fun, stay safe, and come back soon! I’m jealous.
c-n-c, i’m definitely looking forward to fry trucks! yum. ahhh, a cheese tour…sounds lovely!
lydia, i’ve never been so i’m so excited!!
thanks veggiegirl, i will definitley have a blast!
merci joanne! have a great vacation yourself!
eatme_delicious, this granola is pretty great (same with the older one too!). you can’t go wrong with granola!
lobstersquad, i definitely will want to head to southern europe next! and i’ll definitley ring you up for churros and coffee 🙂
thanks, susan! i hope i’ll be able to post too. i’ll definitely try!
thanks patricia! enjoy your first trip abroad as well 🙂
thank you for the tips, cocoapuff! i’ll definitely try out a few suggestions!
fibre, thank you! i’ll definitely have a great time 🙂
How could you go to Europe and not go to Budapest!!! The eatings very good there…
I have a couple of questions about your granola recipe.
1. Does the cinnamon go into the sugar/oil mix or with the top five ingredients?
2. When you say add the sugar to the oil mix, are you refering to the brown sugar or to the 2 T of sugar?
gg_blair, oops! the cinnamon should be mixed in with the oats! i’ll change the directions to read “Mix the first 6 ingredients in large bowl.” Thanks for catching that.
I just made this granola today and used peanut butter instead of almond butter. It is awesome. So many possibilities with this recipe too. Thanks.
Seriously kickpleat. This is the best. granola. ever. I know this is a super old post, but again – I just had to tell you how much I love this.
This is something new to me. Delicious looking and delicious tasting and quite simple to make! I've never heard of this recipe before. These are pure delight and I'm sure to make them again.
hmmm.. I made this…but it got too golden brown. Twas my first time making granola and I believe I burnt it.
Melissa, if you’ve never made granola before….turn the granola often and check up on it frequently. Every oven is different and baking times vary. Plus granola is delicate. But don’t let that discourage you! Homemade granola is often, it just requires tending 🙂