Raw Granola!

 I bought a lovely yet expensive package of “Go Raw” live granola from Whole Foods the other day. It was about $13 for  a pound of dehydrated, sweetened buckwheat groats and raisins. It was great tasting. But since the main ingredient, buckwheat groats (buckwheat in its whole shell form, found in the bulk sections of co-ops or online) are only about $1.25/ lb I felt price-gouged! So I determined to make my own raw granola for a fraction of the price.     

Our body handles buckwheat like a grass, not a grain, so you can eat it if you’re allergic to things like wheat, rice, yeast or corn. And you can eat it if you’re cutting out sugar and grains on a cleanse! These magic pellets make a delicious, nutrient dense cereal that is full of all the enzymes, vitamins and minerals of a raw whole foods. It’s on the opposite end of the spectrum from boxed cereal (which I call flavored cardboard, so deficient of nutrients they have to be sprayed on and get passed right out of our bodies!). You can make this amazing concoction at home for a fraction of the cost of what you’d buy at the store. Even if you don’t have a dehydrator, just use your oven.

Here is the basic recipe and additions/variations:

Soaking time: 1 hourSprouting time: 1 day, Prep Time: 30 minutes on two different days
Dehydrating time: 8 hours at 110 degrees

4 cups buckwheat groats

Start a few hours before bed. Using a large or 4-cup bowl, cover the buckwheat groats with an inch of water, and let sit for 8-12 hours. The next morning, put the groats into a fine-screen sieve or strainer, and rinse them well. Let them sit in the strainer in the sink or over a plate for another 8 hours to sprout. (I’ve heard they are best if you use them before they start to show little sprout “tails” but I sprout until I see tails). If you can, rinse them once halfway through sprouting, and rinse them once more before adding them to the recipe.

Once these are dehydrated, you have the base for an amazing amount of creative rawnola concoctions. I like mine with almonds, coconut and hemp seeds in yogurt or homemade almond milk with vanilla stevia and a shake of cinnamon. So the main thing we are doing here is soaking and sprouting buckwheat groats. You can add any dried fruit, fresh fruit, sweetener, spices, yogurt or almond milk after you have this basic key ingredient soaked, sprouted and dehydrated.

BUT if you want to be like the store-bought kind and you’re not cleansing from fruit sugars, and  you don’t mind washing your dehydrator trays from the sticky date paste you’re about to pour on it, you can mix in the sweetener and spices before dehydrating. Here’s the topping that you mix up and stir into the groats.

1 cup medjool dates (or raisins, prunes, or other dried fruit) soaked for at least 1 hour in 1 cup of water
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp sea salt
2 tsp vanilla
Optional: 1/4 cup warmed coconut oil

1) Blend dates, soak water and spices into a nice sweet paste
2) Mix date mixture with groats (if it’s too runny, let it soak in a while)
3) Spread on teflex sheets (as shown above)
4) Dehydrate at 110-115 degrees for 8-10 hours (or desired crispiness)
5) Mix a jar of toppings to keep on hand :

1 cup dried coconut flakes
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup unsoaked sunflower seeds
1 cup unsoaked sliced almonds
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup dried fruit (goji berries, raisins, blueberries, cherries or cranberries)

Some recipes have you mix these toppings in ahead of time with the groats and date paste and then dehydrate it all together. But I think that is a waste of time and effort and only decreases the freshness of the nutrients in the nuts and seeds. Plus, keeping them separate means your potential combinations are limitless and can be tailored to what you have a taste for that day. Vanilla blueberry almond granola? Cranberry walnut apple granola? You decide!

An additional nutrition hint. If you have superfood powders like chlorella or spirulina you can also add these to the mix (of yogurt or nut mylk) before giving the bowl to your toddler (if they’re like mine, they won’t even notice!).

Here is a short VIDEO of a couple making rawnola step by step.

 

No buckwheat groats?? Here is a raw granola recipe without dehydrated buckwheat groats.

 

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