cakes, prose, woes -- the photos, food & thoughts of a french-speaking seattle-native in brazil

In the end, you're just happy you were there—with your eyes open—and lived to see it. -AB
In the end, you're just happy you were there—with your eyes open—and lived to see it.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Clumpy Granola

a guest recipe by: my mom

What would you call granola with clumps? my mom asked me as i walked by her desk one morning, uh, i answered, clumpy granola. My family loves granola. A batch lasts about 4-5 day around here, however, my mom as as quick to make it as we are to eat it. It is one of her agenda items; she makes it different every single time striving to reach maximum clumpiness while still using a very scarce amount of oil. After myriad batches of cereal-esque results (12th time?) we settled on massaging a bit of egg white into the mess. The result; clumps. Clumps!

Everyone says their mom is an excellent cook, or baker, or whatever. My mom is uniquely neither. She can cook, she can bake, she can pretty much do everything. But what she is most excellent at is being a mom. I've never had a guest chef on Salty before, who else could possibly be qualified (we are very snobby of ourselves here at Salty), nor have i ever really spoken about my family (who are they?). I'm usually the center of the universe, am i not? But today, this post is for her.

I am moving exactly one week from today; suitcases and boxes are exploding in my room, and my brain is distracted enough to the point of need for medication (or wine). But one of the heaviest things that weighs on my mind is saying goodbye to my family. Now it's not like i've never left before; i went to college, i lived in Paris, i've had houses, apartments, dorms, etc., so i've passed the in-n-out stage with flying colors. I've only been living with my parents since after i graduated last May and got back from Brazil in July, so they are used to me shoving off. But this time it's different. This time there's no Christmas break at the end of the semester or designated time when my student visa runs out. This time i'm actually moving to have a life and for once, to stay put (except for times when we're off adventuring the world). Bluntly stated, the transition is harder on my mom than it is on me. Remember that i am only 23 years old, so i cannot blame her for being melancholy over my departure, especially as it is out of the country. But the reality is that we all leave eventually, and distance is relative. The world is only one place; we're all on it at the same time, there is no falling off. How wonderful would things be if the world (and my mom) viewed the world on the same minute scale that i perceive it on. Seeing is believing.

My mom means the world to me, and i know that without her being who she is, i would have never been able to become who i am; able to make the decisions that i make today. So to my mom: i am not leaving you behind, i am taking you with me. You made me who i am by letting me be who i am. Thank you for being my mom. And if you don't mind, make me some of this granola to take on the plane.

Clumpy Granola

4 cups oats
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 cup flax seed
2 cups raisins
1 cup chopped almonds
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 sunflower kernels
2 egg whites

mix everything together in a bowl. that easy. spread as thinly as possible on two baking trays, and bake at 250 F for 30 minutes, checking (but not stirring) every 10. it should darken to a golden color, and harden as it cools.

If you are living outside of your home country, please scribble a comment on how your family deals with you being away, or how you deal with someone being away. Any help or encouragement would mean so much to me and those around me. If 50 of you say, "lucky mom, vacations to Brazil!" then perhaps we can convince her :)

a bientot


the cute sister said...

very cute mal! mom is my favorite cook :D <3

Anonymous said...

I don't have much interest in do-it-yourself granola, but I AM living in Germany while the rest of my family is in California. While I may flatter myself that Mom loves being on the receiving end of my adventure tales (complete with photographs!), she still gets them on a regular basis because, honestly, who else am I gonna tell?? This means she actually hears from me more when I'm 7,000 miles away. Also, free room and board when she visits. Win/win!

shaz said...

Good luck on your adventures Mallory. I left my parents at 25, sobbed all the way on an 8 hour plane trip - new hubby looking stricken at being cause of so much salt water :) Go clumpy granola!

Christy said...

Lucky mom, vacations to Brazil!!

So there's one. And no, mom, Mallory did not put those words in my mouth. Really.

I love the props you use in this shoot!

So I'll see u in Melbourne, then. Or maybe Brazil??

El said...

Sounds like a great mom to make the granola. You've definitely inspired me to make some of this for breakfast and snacks. Delicious. Where did you get those cute little jars?

Nirmala said...

Even though I am a silent reader for more than a year now, I can't rmain silent for the question you hav raised. For me my Mom is my world too. I was away (within the same state though) during my college and for work for more than 6 years. But even my after-marriage life is accidentally blessed with her nearness. I count my blessings each day just bcos of that. Mother's girls are the loveliest women and am sure you'll turn to be a wonderful woman both at life and at heart! All the very best dear!

Sierra said...

soo this is the only place i can comment on your new banner, sorry it has nothing to do with granola haha...anyway, i love it...however, shouldnt the food in the picture be something you made? and not just something delicious you allowed me to consume ;)

It's weird having it change, but im excited to start reading your posts about everything you make in brasil :) i looooove you!


Anonymous said...

Best Wishes on your new adventure! I, too, have lived overseas and enjoyed it immensely, although there were times when it was difficult to be so far away from family and all things familiar. As to how your mom is processing your departure, I'll just say what my own mom said to me: "You'll understand when you're a mom, too." And, as usual, she was right!

The Golden Papaya said...

It's hard leaving family to move to another country. I moved to Brazil with my husband and kids 7 months ago, and my parents have not yet forgiven me for taking their grandchildren away. They're coming to visit next month, though, so I'm hoping they start to come around to the idea.
Best of luck!

Unknown said...

It's been almost 17 years now. At the beginning it was a good thing - some relief and quiet and all that. Later it was not as fun, as missing them, and my friends, and the culture (I moved to US from Israel) was stronger, though there were good things to balance.

When it became difficult was after I had kids. Since I'm still the only one, out of three brothers, who has kids, it is extremely difficult for me that they don't interact with their grandchildren on a regular basis, and don't see them much. Skype and such don't compensate, of course. In a way, it is more difficult for me that my parents miss it, than that my kids do.

Anonymous said...

I like to visit a place where made a delicious plate with some fruit ice cream chocolate sauce and granola it's great. It's like when my husband visit Viagra Online .

ih waow said...

hello, nice to visit here Menjadi blogger yang bahagia

Anonymous said...

Hi! I'm working on a granola recipe round-up for The Huffington Post Taste and I'd love to feature your recipe. Please contact me if you're interested. Thanks!

Mallory said...

Hi Julie, you can go ahead and use the recipe link. no problem. but just so you know there is no contact email listed for you, so i hope you read this comment.