On a recent park outing a friend was telling me about 100 Essays I Don’t Have Time to Write, authored by (among other descriptors, of course) a mother to young children. We discussed how the art you create when you have only small, unreliable chunks of time available to you differs from that of when your imagination has all the time in the world to wander. Since our talk in the park, I’ve been thinking about how my life more generally has altered in response to baby and toddler rhythms.
Because I’m starting to feel a little like a crazy person, and not for lacking of taking care of myself. I shower (almost) daily, eat well, and even practice a requisite ten minutes of yoga each evening before bed. I think it’s these blips of availability – minutes here and there to work or clean or read – that are slowly grating on my sanity. Even when all the things that need to get accomplished, do, it has a different feel than when they are done in an organized manner. A workout paused no less than four times doesn’t reap the same rewards as thirty minutes of uninterrupted sweat. A blog post written piecemeal has a different feel than one mulled over during a generous block of time.
I’m not complaining, just observing. I’m always doing this sort of assessing so I can fiddle with my approach and make things even better. Because this life I have is so, so good. Those in-between-work-getting-done moments are filled with gummy smiles and deep toddler thoughts, both I never appreciated before and now for which I have fallen head over heals.
As much as I love a leisurely breakfast and hoped that would be one of the perks of working from home, they are now reserved for the weekends. Ben and I have both been taking advantage of make-ahead items for our first meal of the day, including baked oatmeal, frozen egg burritos, and granola. We both loved My New Roots’ chunky chocolate buckwheat granola maybe a little too much, since the 8-cup recipe doesn’t seem to last us more than a couple days.
I made a cinnamon version I like just as much as the original, although it is less decadent due both to the change in flavors and a reduction in sugar. It also doesn’t clump as well, either because of the omission of coconut sugar or chia seeds (which mostly seemed to shrivel and fall to the bottom of the jar), but that didn’t bother us. I also switched the oat to buckwheat ratio in favor of the latter. Buckwheat has a hearty flavor that pairs well with other strong flavors, so the sweet warmth of ground cinnamon is a capable replacement for chocolate (if ever there was one). It smells like cinnamon buns while it bakes and the resulting granola is mildly sweet, surprisingly light, and perfectly filling. I like to eat it with yogurt, milk, or even ricotta, with or without fresh fruit.
Cinnamon Buckwheat Granola
adapted from My New Roots
3 c buckwheat groats
1 c rolled oats
1 1/2 c coconut flakes (also called coconut chips)
1 c sliced almonds
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c coconut oil
1/3 c maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
3 tbsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, stir together the buckwheat, oats, coconut, almonds, and salt.
Add the coconut oil to a small saucepan over low heat. Once melted, whisk in the maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon until smooth. Pour the coconut oil mixture over the buckwheat mixture and stir to evenly coat. Spread evenly on a large baking sheet or baking dish and bake 30 minutes, stirring about every ten minutes.