Extending the fall fantasy.

We got down to a cool, breezy 58 degrees Fahrenheit overnight, which makes it easy for me to honor my premature declaration of autumn.

I’m celebrating by “falling” back to two of my favorite autumn pastimes: cooking and crafts.

This morning I made the chai tea recipe that Middle Sister and I discovered last year about this time. I made it over the summer to drink over ice, but it’s much more cozy having it hot this morning:

Homemade Chai
4 cups water
8 bags of black tea
8 cardamom pods, crackedimage
3 cinnamon sticks
3 whole star anise
1/4 cup sugar
3 cups milk

Bring tea, water, and spices to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for five minutes. Remove spices and tea bags, add sugar and milk.

Drink what you like, and put the rest in a pitcher in the fridge, to heat up the next morning. Actually, I multiply the recipe by 1.5 so the batch lasts for a couple of days.

Since Middle Sister only has classes on T/Th (a lovely schedule, though cramming in 19 hours’ worth of classes in two days is a real marathon), yesterday afternoon we tried out a new granola recipe. Our household are huge granola fans, but the commercial brands are packed with fat and sugar, which Middle Sister can’t eat. This new recipe is so delicious it’s destined to be one I have memorized from making it so often:

imageHomemade Granola
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup water
3 tsp vanilla
1 tsp salt
8 cups rolled oats
2 cups nuts of your choice
dried fruit of your choice

Mix water and sugar. Microwave for one minute. Add vanilla and salt. In a large bowl, combine with oats and nuts. Spread on two parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. Bake at 275 for 25 minutes. Stir while still on cookie sheets. Bake for another 20 minutes. Add dried fruit, let cool, and store in air tight containers.

This first time we used pecans and made one sheet with craisins and one with dried cherries. The toasted pecans mixed with tart-sweetness of the fruits are heavenly. Next time we’ll try a combination of nuts, different fruits, and maybe some flax seeds for extra texture.

And now, on to the crafts…

My new knitting project is coming along very quickly. I have the knitting stage of three of these soon-to-be small clutch purses completed.


And I’ve finished the first step of the first coffee cup insulated holder.


It’s fun having several projects going at once, for variety.

And now, time to head to the Farmer’s Market – in a jacket!!! Thank you, Kansas weather, for cooperating with my fantasy of early fall.


10 thoughts on “Extending the fall fantasy.

  1. I am actually making granola today and the recipe has very little sugar in it. If you would like the recipe, let me know and I’ll give it to you. 🙂
    I will have to try to your chai recipe though. It looks much simpler than the one I use (and has less ingredients).

    Liked by 1 person

      • Sure thing. Here goes:
        2 cups coconut flakes
        1 cup raw almonds (roughly chopped)
        1/4 cup pepitas
        3/4 cup sunflower seeds
        2 tablespoons chia seeds
        1 tablespoon cinnamon
        1/4 cup coconut oil
        2 tablespoons rice malt syrup (or maple)
        Preheat oven to 180°c. Combine all ingredients in bowl and then spread evenly on a baking tray. Cook for 15 minutes stirring throughout so that all ingredients brown. Remove from oven and cool. Keeps for about 3 weeks in an airtight container.

        Liked by 1 person

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