Smitten With Family, Friends, and Food: Day 3

I have a confession.
I cheated on my Smitten Kitchen Resolution.
I did not cook dinner last night from my SK cookbook... although I had every intention to.
I had the ingredients ready in the refrigerator, I had read over the recipe numerous times, and knew the exact timing of when to start cooking. I was completely prepared until an unexpected, yet enticing invitation to the Thunder game came on the phone. I immediately started pacing, head in hands, completely unsure of what to do. 

"Stay home and cook this beautiful meal and stick with your resolution", said the good kitchen angel. 

"You technically already made a recipe today; go to the game", said the tempting kitchen devil.
This is the same devil that always convinces you to go back for seconds on dessert and I always listen to it. 

The devil was true though, I had made a delicious recipe from the SK cookbook that morning so I would still be able to blog today, just not about my dinner, which was freezer waffles after the game.

So it was really a win-win situation. You all still get a great recipe blog post, I got to go and enjoy a great NBA game, and the Thunder dominated the Nuggets, so really it was a win-win-win situation!

Wednesday morning I made homemade granola, something I have been wanting to do for a long time. I eat granola on my yogurt almost every morning and I knew I would love one with less sugar, not to mention I had a blast making it!

Big Cluster Maple Granola: by the Smitten Kitchen
makes 7 cups (great for sharing!)

What You Need
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant!)
1 cup unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup maple syrup (or more if you prefer a sweeter granola)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 large egg white
1 1/2 cups dried cherries or other dried fruit

What You Do
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Combine all ingredients but the egg white and dried fruit in a large bowl, tossing to coat evenly.
3. Whisk the egg white in a small bowl until frothy. 
4. Stir into the granola mixture.
5. Spread it in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
6. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes. About halfway through, gently stir the granola, carefully turning the granola, breaking it as little as possible. 
7. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and onto a cooling rack until cooled.
8. Break up into whatever size clusters you would like and mix in fruit.

This granola is so delicious that I was tempted to eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I also got to bag some up and share it with my parents who think it is much better than anything they have ever bought. This recipe is going to be sticking around, in fact, I will probably make more today.

Roasted chicken tonight! For real this time!

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