By Anne Marie
My brother and his family came down to visit us over the weekend on their annual Minnuto Summer Road Trip (ah, we had SO much fun! Bourbon tours, horse farms, minor league baseball complete with dollar beers and unlimited popcorn refills) and as a typical Italian, the first thought on my mind was food. I stocked up on the basics, but wanted to make a few things to make their visit extra special. So I thought, what is healthy, kid-friendly and totally representative of our crazy-vegetarian-running-hippie-I-make-my-own-laundry-household?
GRANOLA. Crunchy, crunchy granola.
But even better – BANANA BREAD crunchy granola, a la Minimalist Baker. Since just the thought of the smell of my Ma’s banana bread makes me drool uncontrollably, this combination seemed a bit too perfect for our mini-Minnuto family reunion. (Psssst, Ma..I’m coming home next week. I know you have overripe bananas sitting on that counter.)
Plus, I hadn’t made granola in for-ev-er. During the time in my life when I lived alone in a teeny tiny town whose biggest attraction (besides the greatest college on the planet, St. Bonaventure University) was the super Wal-Mart, I made a LOT of granola. To the point where I was taking it around in Ziploc bags and giving samples to strangers and asking them if it was good enough to sell at the farmers’ market.
Looking back, a few trips to that there super Wal Mart wouldn’t have hurt. But I was too busy filling my apartment with the smell of honey and cinnamon and topping my non-Greek yogurt (c’mon people, we’re talking 2009 here!) with handful upon handful of crunchy, oat-y nutritious-ness.
Years later, not much has changed…other than the fact that my yogurt is now vegan.
After our stint in the nation’s capital, we’re back to living in a small town (wee bit bigger than Olean, thankfully) and I still have granola spilling everywhere in my purse. Hey, you never know when you’ll get stranded on an elevator.
(But if you do, you’ll totally want to be stranded with me. Yes, I’ll have a panic attack and start crying within the first two minutes, but I will repay you for your care taking with at least three to four snack options. One of them being a big ol’ bag of this granola.)
After making a huge batch on Friday and watching it quickly disappear over the weekend (I would love to say it was all my nieces, but it was totally, totally me) it is now a new Izzo neé-Minnuto staple.
Go check it out on Minimalist Baker! Also, I just peeped their new peanut butter chocolate chip granola recipe…seeing as how easy, quick and unbearably delicious this banana bread recipe was…I just might have to buy stock in Ziploc bags.