Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Can It Be True? Grain- AND Nut-Free Granola!

Ho boy. Here comes the new food addiction...I'm still on a restricted diet right now, trying to figure out why my stomach feels like it wants to blow up every time I eat, so I haven't been eating nuts and many other things that are generally OK on the paleo diet. Here's a list of what I'm not eating:

  • Grains & pseudograins
  • Dairy
  • Nuts
  • Eggs
  • Nightshades (peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, potato)
  • Starches (sweet potatoes & plantains)
  • Industrial oils (canola, safflower, etc.)
  • Processed sugar (honey & maple syrup are OK, but not sugar)
  • Cocoa
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine

In addition, all the proteins I am eating are grass-fed, pastured, or wild-caught, and all my veggies are cooked to make them more digestible. It can be difficult enough to do at home but in about a week I'm going backpacking on the coast with my boyfriend and his family for the annual escape to the ocean, and I won't be able to eat many of the things I normally do like trail mixes or plantain chips. So my biggest challenge yet is here. What do I eat for 5 days with all these restrictions? Especially for breakfasts...
Then I came upon this Paleo/Autoimmune Granola from And Love It Too, which is nut-free as well as grain-free! I tweaked the recipe a little bit, using ground clove since I was out of cardamom, and it was so good I don't even know if I want to try it with the cardamom! It's sweet and spicy and salty and super addictive. I made it a couple weeks ahead of time and I think I might end up having to make more before I go since I've been snacking on it!

In her recipe she says to bake the carrot strips at 350 until crispy, but mine turned brown and crispy, or stayed orange and soggy, so I tried doing some in the dehydrator and it worked a lot better. I tried some in strips made with a vegetable peeler and some just cut into thin coins and they both turned out great. Instead of using the vegetable setting I put them in with a batch of jerky I was making, at 155 degrees F and they were done in about an hour. I also used about three times as many carrots, since two carrots, when dried, didn't amount to much.

Carrot strips fresh out of the dehydrator.
Here's my version of the recipe:

5 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
2 TB ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp sea salt
4 large carrots
2 cups raisins
1 cup dried apricot, chopped

Slice the carrots thinly, using either a vegetable peeler to make strips, or a knife to make coins. Spread on dehydrator trays in a single layer and dehydrate at 155 F for about an hour, until dried.
In a pan over medium heat, toast the coconut flakes one cup at a time, stirring constantly until golden
Toss all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.

I'm planning to eat this granola in the mornings with rehydrated colostrum (one of the supplements I'm taking for my stomach) which tastes a lot like powdered milk. However, if you eat dairy, you could bring normal milk powder, or coconut milk powder, or canned coconut milk, or just eat it plain! I'm making some salmon jerky, too, for a little extra protein.