I’m thrilled to announce that Elyse Kopecky has officially joined the Summer Tomato team as our new recipe developer. Elyse is a whole foods chef and marketing consultant based in Portland, Oregon, who studied health-supportive culinary arts at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York.
Since the launch of Foodist I’ve been looking for new ways to grow and improve Summer Tomato, and thousands of you have made it clear that you want more Foodist Approved recipes. Elyse’s fabulous creations are the perfect mix of seasonal, nutritious and delicious, and are designed to be both simple enough to fit into your life and fun enough to keep you cooking.
Foodist Approved: Nutty Sunrise Granola
by Elyse Kopecky
The food industry knows that very few of us have time to cook a nutritious breakfast, that’s why the cereal aisle runs the length of the grocery store. But any breakfast that you rip out of a package or grab from the glass counter at your go-to coffee joint probably has few redeeming nutritious qualities.
Even those fancy bags of “high-fiber,” “high-protein,” “whole-grain” granola that cost as much as a bottle of wine are full of ingredients that lack true sustenance. Often they have lots of added sugar marketed as “organic cane sugar” or “evaporated cane juice,” which is just a fancy (and deceptive) way of saying white sugar––the last thing we should be feeding our bodies first thing in the morning.
Here’s some good news.
Homemade granola is seriously easy to make and is a fabulous healthy breakfast option. I’ve baked many batches (enough to last me the year) to perfect this recipe, which is packed full of protein, loaded in omega-3s and balanced with whole grains. Of course it’s also full of nutty, cinnamon-y flavor with just the right amount of sweetness.
For the sweetener, I use brown rice syrup because it’s minimally processed and has a low glycemic index. Its consistency makes the oats and quinoa extra crunchy, which allows us to use less oil.
For an awesome weekday breakfast I suggest my Nutty Sunrise Granola sprinkled atop whole milk organic yogurt and chopped fresh fruit. Or enjoy it with unsweetened almond or hemp milk. And on those days when you’re rushing out that door, grab a small bag of granola to munch on at your desk.
Nutty mornings now won’t seem quite so bad!
Nutty Sunrise Granola Recipe
Yield: 6 cups
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup quinoa flakes (sold in the health-food aisle)
- ¼ cup ground flax, or chia seeds or sesame seeds
- ½ cup date pieces or goji berries
- ½ cup coconut flakes
- 1 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- ½ cup brown rice syrup
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine the oats, quinoa flakes, ground flax, date pieces, coconut flakes and nuts in a large mixing bowl with the cinnamon, ginger and salt.
Whisk together the eggs, vanilla, coconut oil and brown rice syrup.
Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and stir until evenly coated.
Spread out the mix in a thin layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 – 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to prevent the nuts from burning. To maintain the crunch let cool completely before storing in a glass jar.
Elyse Kopecky is a social media consultant and whole foods chef based in Portland, OR. After 10 years working for NIKE and EA SPORTS she left her desk job for the chance to study culinary nutrition at the Natural Gourmet Institute in NYC. Follow her adventures in the kitchen and on the trail at www.freshabits.com and @freshabits.