Who doesn’t love nutella? (update: I have found actual living breathing human beings who do not like nutella and they are currently under observation right now for mental illness and/or extra terrestrial taste buds)
I love granola bars. They’re the perfect snack but the store bought ones are so expensive and unnecessary when it’s so unbelievably easy to make your own at home!
You can eat them anytime – take them to school, eat them as a midnight snack, eat them for dessert, eat them for breakfast, eat them with more nutella on top, eat more than half the batch while you’re photographing them..
You can play around with the ingredients and mix and match to your liking.
Don’t like nuts? Don’t put them in.
LOVE nuts? Put in more!
Like your granola bars crunchy? Add 2tbsp. more oil to the batter and bake for a few minutes longer!
These make approximately 8-10 bars, depending on how big you cut them and how much of the mixture you ‘taste’ before baking.
Nutella Granola Bars
2 cups oats
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup mix nuts and dried fruit
6 tbsp nutella
5 tbsp honey
1.5 tbsp oil
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional but strongly recommended)
Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celcius and grease a baking pan.
Mix oats, flour and nuts/dried fruit in a large bowl.
I love arugula. Call me weird, but the bitterness is appealing to me? It’s one of the only leaves I’ll have raw. Raw spinach? bleh. Lettuce? tasteless. collard? ew.
But I’m not exactly fond of salads. They’re not filling enough or they’re doused in way too sweet dressing or they’re bland. So instead I like my arugula on pizza or in dishes like this. This dish is absolutely complete. Soft, fluffy millet, warm spicy curry, mellow sweet potato, bright acidic cherry tomatoes and sharp arugula.
I recently discovered millet as a grain. Prior, I’d only had millet flour rotis which are very popular in India and ‘baajre ki khichdi’ which is a millet stew cooked traditionally in lots of indian ghee and milk or cream. I had never actually had millet by itself. But a few weeks ago my mom picked up a bag of organic mixed millet and I fell in love! Its softer and less chewy than grains like quinoa and brown rice. It also has milder, less nutty taste.
The next component of the dish is the curry! This is a spicy, improvised curry that I sort of made up as I went a long. It has garlic, onion, coconut milk and a generous dash of spices. The sweet potato really balances out the spiciness.
And last but not least, the cherry tomatoes. We don’t normally have cherry tomatoes at home because they’re not always available here. We have to go to speciality grocery stores and even then, they’re quite expensive. But boy are they worth it! They’re spunky and colorful and they just elevate the dish.
I really hope you try out this dish. Even if you don’t have all the components – improvise! No millet? Use rice or another similar grain. No arugula? Skip it, or another raw green. No cherry tomatoes? Use normal diced tomatoes! Don’t have all the spices? Use a store bought curry powder, garam masala or thai spice mix instead!Don’t like sweet potato or spinach? Use other veggies – normal potatoes would be fine and you can substitute in any other vegetable under the sun. Pumpkin or zucchini would be wonderful here!
Oh, and I forgot to mention – this is accidentally vegan 🙂
Now on to the recipe!
Sweet Potato & Spinach curry
(makes 3 portions)
2/3 tablespoon diced garlic/garlic paste
1 large or 2 small onions, diced
1 tsp grated ginger
3 small or two medium sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced
1.5 cup spinach (or just 2 handfuls) cleaned and chopped roughly
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 tsp coriander powder, 1/4 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp cumin seeds/cumin powder, 1/4 tsp fenugreek powder, 1/8 tsp cinnamon, 1/2-1 tsp chili powder, dash of black pepper and salt to taste
3-4 handfuls arugula, cleaned
cherry tomatoes, washed and halved
2 cups cooked millet or any other grain
Heat some olive oil in a pan and when it’s hot, add in the garlic, onion and ginger.
Keep mixing and when the onion and garlic are lightly browned, add in the sweet potato, around 1/2 cup water and 1/4 cup of the coconut milk.
Cover and let simmer on low heat for around 15 minutes.
Add in the spices and 1/4 cup more of the coconut milk, stir well
Cook for another 10 minutes until the sweet potato is tender, stirring well throughout
Add in the spices and the rest of the coconut milk, stir until the curry is thickened and the spinach is cooked (about a minute)
Remove from heat
Remove the stems from the arugula (unless you can take the bitter taste of the stems then leave them on) and arrange a handful on the plate
Divide the millet into three portions and place a portion onto the plate
Top with cherry tomatoes and a generous helping of the curry
A wonderful palette of flavors and textures in this dish. Who knew something so healthy and nutritious could taste so good?
Feel free to mix up the veggies in this, but I love the combination of these because there is such a variety in size and crunch. The wild black rice is crunchy while the brown rice is hearty and nutty, the mushrooms and peas are soft and sweet while the carrot and cabbage blend in perfectly with the chewy (in a good way!) rice.
This dish is extremely high in protein, fibre, vitamin A, manganese, vitamin C and iron all the while being comforting and delicious!
Asian Wild Rice with Vegetables
1/3 cup dry brown rice
1/3 cup dry wild rice
1/2 packet button mushrooms, chopped finely
1 carrot, grated
1 diced onion
3 cloves garlic
1 cup finely diced cabbage
1.5 tsp olive oil
1.5 tablespoon soy sauce
chili powder, according to taste
1/2 tablespoon honey
Cook the rice according to instructions or just boil for 30-40 minutes until cooked.
Meanwhile, wash and chop the vegetables.
Heat a wok or a large pan and spread the olive oil
When the oil is hot add the garlic and onion and sauté until browned. Add the peas and cabbage and cook for a minute and then add in the mushrooms and carrot. Add the soy sauce, honey and chili powder and cook for a few minutes, mixing well.
Add the rice, mix everything again and then cover the pan to let everything cook for a few minutes.