Isn’t it crazy how the day after Thanksgiving comes and boom…it’s Christmas! It always takes me by surprise probably because I love each holiday and try to focus on one at a time.
We got our trees this weekend, and because we stayed in town this year for Thanksgiving my decorating is done! Last year I got a tabletop tree for my dining room and it is now a new tradition. It is so festive to have one up while we are having dinner parties all season long.
I also put up this little artificial tree in my loft office.
With the decorating done I am now inspired to think about what gifts and goodies to make this year for family and friends. This week I will share a few ideas that I have come up with.
First up…Homemade Granola!
Most people do not take the time to make their own granola so when they get some as a gift it is very special. It’s a fun item to package up…either in a glass jar or in a cellophane bag tied with a beautiful ribbon.
There are so many variations of granola. I have included my basic recipe below, but for the holidays you could add in dried cranberries, cherries or anything else you like. I make granola every week, and lately have been adding shredded coconut for some extra flavor.
Make a double batch because you will want to have some around for yourself also; so delicious. Most mornings I have about a ¼ cup topped with plain greek yogurt and lots of berries.
Enjoy! Send me a photo of your granola packaged up for the holidays; I would love to see your creations.
- 3 cups rolled oats, gluten free
- 1 1/2 cups nuts and seeds (sliced almonds, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, etc.)
- 1/2 cup apple juice, no added sugar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup oil, safflower or sunflower
- 1 tsp cinnamon, ground
- 1/4 tsp cloves, ground
- 1 tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix oats and your combo of nuts and seeds in a large bowl.
Combine apple juice, honey, maple syrup, oil, spices and salt in a saucepan, heat on stove on low until all ingredients are incorporated together.
Toss wet ingredients with the dry ingredients.
Spread on to a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
Bake for 40 minutes, turning granola twice after 15 minute intervals.
Let cool, store in an airtight container.