Over the past 6 months I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Sarah Pinneo through our online connections. Sarah is articulate, passionate about the health of her family and undeniably funny. I was honored when she reached out and asked me to participate in the Julia’s Child blog tour. Sarah is an established food journalist, blogger and co-author of The Ski House Cookbook.
Her new book, Julia’s Child, tells the tale of Julia Bailey, a mompreneur who struggles with many of the same issues working parents are confronted with. Julia is desperately trying to balance her home life and the life of a start up food company specializing in making organic toddler meals. Her two small children and husband are longing for her to be home and the company is luring her in with the potential of turning a profit. Julia’s strife is real and easy to identify with. I found myself laughing out loud, nodding in agreement and wanting Julia to make the ‘right’ decisions.
One of my favorite moments in the book was when Julia was describing how her focus changed when her first child was born:
The impulse to be green and clean hit me like a ton of bricks…. Clearly more care and attention to foodstuffs would be necessary…. I learned that the first organic purchase many women ever make is a jar of baby food.
Throughout her fictional debut Sarah weaves credible foodie advice and healthy recipes that even the novice chef could create. I asked Sarah if she would share one of her famous recipes with us. Here’s what she had to say:
Thank you, Lori, for having me on Groovy Green Livin. I love this site, and when I was contemplating what recipe to share her today, one in particular seemed the obvious choice: Not-Too-Sweet Maple Pecan Granola!
Julia’s Child is the story of a self-described granola mom. The tag line of the book is: “a delectable comedy for every woman who’s ever wondered if buying that $6 box of organic crackers makes her a hero or a sucker.” Balancing the desire to do good with the limits of time and money is a central theme of the story.
Readers often ask me whether I’m as “green” as Julia, and my answer is: nearly. But Julia must learn, between pages 1 and 279, how to reconcile her pristine goals with living in the real world.
Yet it should come as no surprise that at my house, we often make our own granola! I find that many commercial granolas have a lot more sugar than I’d like, and they also tend to taste stale. This recipe makes a big batch, but at our house it only lasts a few days. Enjoy!
Not-Too-Sweet Maple Pecan Granola
5 cups of rolled oats
1 cup of chopped pecans
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/8 teaspoon salt
4 1/2 teaspoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon brown sugar
- Preheat the oven to 300.
- In a large bowl, stir together the oats, pecans, coconut, sunflower seeds, cinnamon, and salt. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter with the syrup and sugar, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the butter mixture over the oat mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.
- Spread the granola evenly over a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake until golden, about 23 minutes. Turn off the oven, but allow the granola to remain inside for an additional 15 to 20 minutes. Then remove from oven and place on a rack. With a spatula, gently loosen the granola, pushing it from the edges inward. (This will prevent it from sticking.) Cool thoroughly before storing in an airtight container.
Julia’s Child could be the next book I suggest for my book club to tackle. It is a worthwhile read, touching upon issues that many of us are confronted with at some point during our tenure as parents.
For more information on Sarah Pinneo stop by her site, Twitter, or find her on Facebook.
I’m looking forward to trying the granola recipe. Do you make your own granola?
Disclosure: There are a few Amazon links in this post. Any purchase of Sarah’s books will put a few pennies in my pocket. Thanks!