Blend of the Best Granola

Over the years, both the Sisters and Brothers have developed and sold granola at Priory Books & Gifts and through Paraclete Press. We are both proud of our two very different recipes. The Brothers’ granola is chock full of dried fruits and nuts and flavored with maple to add just that little New England touch. The Sisters’ granola is very simple and sweetened with honey and cinnamon. We like to think of ours as the healthier option! We’ve been running a little secret competition on the side to see whose granola is more popular, and we respectfully concede to the Brothers, who have won — hands down!

Even though I’m not at liberty to give away our secret recipes, I have adapted my own that is what I call a “blend of the best” – a combo of the two. Sprinkled over our homemade yogurt and garnished with fresh fruit, this has become one of our signature breakfast menus at Bethany. A terrific way to start your day!

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Blend of the Best Granola
SERVINGS
18cups
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
cups
COOK TIME
1 hour, 15 minutes
PREP TIME
10minutes
READY IN
4hours

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Combine the oats, almonds, brown sugar and cinnamon in a large bowl.
  2. Melt the butter and add the honey, agave (or substitute 1 c. Karo Syrup for both of these) and vanilla extract.
  3. Add this mixture to the oat mixture and blend well.
  4. Spread the granola mixture on two cookie sheet pans lined with parchment.
  5. Bake in a 275 oven for 1 hr. and 15 min.
  6. Turn the oven off and leave granola in for a couple more hours or even overnight to dry out.
  7. Remove from the oven, break up the granola and add any additional dried fruits.
  8. Store in an airtight container, for up to 6 weeks. Enjoy!

Homemade Granola with Yogurt

If you should be up and around at 5:30 every a.m. you are apt to see two young sisters making their way down the road to the barn to milk our 3 cows. These gorgeous brown guernseys keep us well supplied with quality fresh milk every day. This makes it possible for us to produce our own yogurt and soft cheeses which we have doing for some time. Only recently however, have we begun to use the Crockpot method which results in a wonderfully thick satisfying yogurt with little to no effort. Combine this with our homemade granola and some fresh fruit and you have a beautiful, bright, healthy breakfast that is a favorite at the convent.

We decided to offer it for our last oblate retreat and it was met with such overwhelmingly positive response from so many we have decided to serve it again in the near future. Perhaps you would like to give it try even if you don’t have any cows of your own. Healthy Summer Breakfast!

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Homemade Granola with Yogurt
Granola -
Serves: 12
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Cool Time: overnight
Ready In: Next day

Crockpot Yogurt -
Serves 16
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes approximately
Cool Time: 3.5-4 hours
Cure Time: 10-12 hours
Drain Time: 2 -4 hours (if thicker yogurt is desired)
Ready In: Next day

What You will Need:
Electric Crockpot
Some Type of Cooking or Dairy Thermometer
A Wisk or Fork
A Colander
Muslin, Plyban Cheescloth or some woven type of woven cloth
Bath towel or woolen scarf
Oven or Other draft free warm location
SERVINGS
12(for granola)
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
(for granola)
COOK TIME
PREP TIME
READY IN

Ingredients

Instructions

Granola
  1. Heat the first four ingredients (through the vanilla) in a skillet, then add the next 2 items (oats and cinnamon) and mix well
  2. Spread evenly on paper lined sheet pans. Bake 1 hr 15 min on 225 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Leave granola in oven overnight and package the following day -- mixing in the raising first and breaking up chunks
Crockpot Yogurt
  1. Place the gallon of milk into the crock pot and cover. Heat the milk slowly until the milk is between 180 Fahrenheit - 190 Fahrenheit it is vital to heat the milk to at least 180 Fahrenheit.
  2. Allow the milk to cool to 110 Fahrenheit (takes 3.5 - 4 hours). Milk should not be a higher or lower temperature. There may be a skin formed on the milk (if you are using non homogenized or raw milk). If so, carefully remove it.
  3. Place 1 cup of the warm milk in a separate small bowl. Add 2 Tablespoons of starter yogurt to the cup of milk. (no more than 2 Tablespoons - that is all you need)
  4. With a fork or whisk, gently stir the starter yogurt into the milk.
  5. Next, pour the milk back into the crock pot and stir gently from side to side. Do not stir in circles, use a careful and slow up and down lifting motion across the length of the crock.
  6. Lift it out of the electric base and place it in a cool oven. Lay a bath towel or shawl around the crock and leave it undisturbed overnight or for 10 - 12 hours. You want the milk to stay nice and warm. An oven with a pilot light or electric light turned on works great. Do not disturb the milk and keep the oven door closed. After 10 -12 hours your yogurt should be solid with a layer of whey on the top. If you like thicker yogurt, you'll need to drain or carefully pour off the whey by pouring it into a colander lined with cheesecloth that has been set on top of a large pot.
  7. It takes about 2 hours of draining to make a thick natural yogurt, and about 3 or 4 hours to make a Greek style yogurt. Next, yogurt can be stored in a refrigerator or cooler to keep it sweet tasting. Some people prefer a tart yogurt and leave it out at room temperature for over 24 hours. The longer it stays at room temperature, the tarter it will become. Save a little back for the next batch!

*(any kind of yogurt, but must have both the active
and live cultures of lactobacillus bulgaricus and streptococcus
thermophilus. Read the label to be sure that you have the right
starter bacteria)

Yogurt can be sweetened with jam, sugar, honey, or whatever you like.
At the convent, we received a wonderful donation recently of Agave
nectar. This natural sweetener has made some lovely batches of yogurt
for our guests!