Vanilla Buckwheat Granola

I have to say that the first time I tried kasha (roasted buckwheat groats) I was not impressed. I didn’t know what I was going to do with them. I ate them because I didn’t want to waste them but it was pretty rough. The rest of them sat in my cupboard for several months until I could find something to do with them. Finally I found a recipe that looked like it was worth trying. If you’ve tried kasha before and haven’t been too sure about it I have to say that it is quite edible this way. In fact I keep going back for more. This is a totally different kind of recipe for me. I never would have thought to toast millet and quinoa seeds for cereal. They are add a very nice crunch to the granola. My first batch got a bit overdone so I’m not posting pictures right away but next time I make it I’ll be sure to add some.

2 cups kasha
1/4 cup uncooked millet
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup sliced or chopped almonds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup applesauce
3 Tablespoons olive oil
3 Tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Combine applesauce, olive oil, honey and vanilla in a small pot and heat gently. Remove from heat and let cool for a minute. Pour wet ingredients over dry and combine well.
Spread evenly on parchment lined baking sheet and bake 20-30 minutes at 350 until millet and quinoa turn golden.
Cool completely and store in tightly covered container.

I didn’t have enough kasha left to make this recipe so I substituted hulled pumpkin seeds and that was a beautiful thing. Buckwheat is lower in carbs than many other grains and it is actually related to rhubarb and falls into the seed category.
I love the fact that this is not a sweet granola and that much of the sweetness comes from unsweetened applesauce and the rest is from honey so there is no refined sugar.
My granola got overdone but I think it was mostly because it was bedtime for our little girl and I was not watching as closely as I should have. The second time I made it I tried baking at 325 and it took 35 minutes and turned out beautifully. My oven tends to be a bit hot so I’m sure that’s the main reason why I had problems the first time.

Thank you Anja for a great recipe! I think I will be trying some more grain/seed combinations for granola. You can find this recipe at http://www.anjasfood4thought.com/2011/05/vanilla-buckwheat-granola.html

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