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Training Diary - Kitchen Sink Granola

Reality can be alarming. Especially when what you think is true is not exactly how things are. Take for example my morning bike ride (I promise I will bring this back to food and it will all loop together wonderfully):

The workout was the following: 4 loops of Central Park with 5 Harlem Hill repeats. 

I started out with Group 1, the fastest group. I was quickly dropped on the second loop. During the summer and fall of last year I could stay with Group 1. But it's March, and it's been frickin' freezing outside, so I haven't been on my bike. Consequently, I got picked up by Group 2 and rode with them.

This is fine, I tell myself. Group 1 are all boys, anyway. Group 1 smells. And they talk funny (one of them is Australian - love ya, Mark!). 

And I must take a moment to remind myself it is only March. But with my first race fast approaching on April 7 in South Beach, it is sometimes hard to reconcile what you want with what you actually have.

Which brings me to granola. Yes, granola.

The other day I wanted some, but as I perused the contents of my cabinets, I realized I did not have the ingredients to make a truly stellar granola. But I had something in I made granola with what I had. And it was good. Quite good, in fact.

So, sometimes you just have to do the best you can with what you have. And as I realized with the granola, what you have can add up to be a lot more than you thought and even produce some pretty impressive results.

Here's how to make Kitchen Sink Granola:

What You Need:

2 cups rolled oats (I used the Quaker 5 minute kind because that's what I had available)

1/2 cup silvered almonds

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1/3 cup shredded, unsweetened coconut

3/4 cup chopped dried figs (you can use any kind of dried fruit, but again, this is what was rolling around in my cabinets).

2 tbsp Coconut Oil

2 tbsp Maple Syrup

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

What To Do:

Heat your oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, throw ALL The ingredients together. That's right, all of 'em. Now, mix. Make sure that coconut oil is evenly distributed.

Spread the mixture evenly onto a large baking sheet and throw it in the oven.

Let it toast for about 5 minutes, and give it a check. The coconut shreds can burn easily, so you want to make sure you give this stuff a good mix every now and again. You do NOT want burned coconut.

Toast for about 10 more minutes, making sure to mix things up every now and again. 

Remove from the oven and allow it to cool.

Finishing Touches:

I baked a sweet potato, mashed it up with some almond milk, topped it with the granola and then heated the whole enterprise in the microwave for about a minute and a half.

Strong coffee recommended.

South Beach, here I come....

Oh, and Group 1 really doesn't smell. Not worse than the rest of us, anyway...


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