I don’t get excited about eating birdseed. If I ever do put granola on my grocery list it’s some kind of mistake — not granola for the sake of granola, but rather crunch gracing an apple crisp or rolled oats on muffin duty.
What I have been getting excited about is infusing things. Since lime butter was such a revelation, I realized…you can infuse anything with bright citrus flavours, warm spices and also… by using tea!
At the end of my street there’s a cute little gourmet tea shop called GTBT. They sell everything loose leaf and besides having staples like green, jasmine, lavender and black tea, they also make their own tea blends. My favourite part is that when deciding on a tea, they open up the canister and you get to stick in your nose and smell each kind. Total sensory overload. Sometimes when I walk by I wanna pop in just to catch a whiff of their Pina Colada tea mix, and continue off to school with a nostril-ful of afternoons at the beach.
One way to get excited about eating a healthy breakfast is to make homemade granola using gourmet tea to spice it! I headed over to Bulk Barn and got some puffed quinoa, Kamut grains, pistachios, dried cranberries, raw almonds, and…just to prove my cluelessness, some other grain which I forgot the name of, and now have no clue what to call. (If you can tell me from the pictures what it is, I’ll be eternally grateful).
At the tea shop, I decided on their Spiced Almond Tea blend, which paired well with my pistachios, cranberries and chopped almonds. It tastes/smells warm like dried apples, cinnamon, cloves and mulled wine. Start off by making a bit of the tea and steeping the dried cranberries in it. Then, toss the nuts and grains in olive oil and toast them in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, make a slurry with 4 tablespoons of butter, 1/2 cup of brown sugar and 1/2 cup of honey. Put it in a pot on the stove with 1 tablespoon of the loose tea leaves in it.
Let everything melt and steep, simmering for about 10 minutes. Taste as you go and decide when the tea flavour is to your liking. Strain your mixture through a mesh strainer and discard the used tea leaves. This is your Almond Spice Tea-Infusion.
Remove the granola mix from the oven and pour your infused tea slurry on top. Here I added 3 tablespoons of flour just to make a bit of a crust on the granola.
Then it’s back in the oven for another 30 minutes at 300 degrees . That’s it, pretty simple. Nice, toasty, warm granola with the spiced flavours of your favourite tea blend right in it. So cozy. Even if it doesn’t end up on yoghurt in the morning, dear god an apple crisp will do it justice!