Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Granola Girl

S. R. Karfelt

Whenever I make a fresh batch of gorp, I text a picture of it to the person who first introduced me to it. We call it gorp—but that’s just another term for trail mix. There really isn’t a recipe for it, although it all starts with granola.

gra-no-la definition
a kind of breakfast cereal consisting typically of rolled oats, brown sugar or honey, dried fruit, and nuts.
denoting those with liberal or environmentalist political views, typified as eating health foods.
modifier noun: granola

We’re concerned with the first definition of granola for this. You can make your own and eliminate the sugar altogether. Sometimes I do that, you bake it, and you can use maple sugar or honey, or whatever to sweeten it if you like.

The idea of gorp is to turn your granola into food that is portable, filling, and nutritious. It’s whatever works for you, and I’ve modified mine over the years, and I also change it up depending on where it’s going. If it’s going to end up in the desert, it’s better not to put anything in that might melt. If it’s going on a rough hike, I make sure I add plenty of ingredients with protein and some salt.

Measuring and following recipes isn’t my thing, so I doubt I’ve ever made the same batch of gorp twice. For this particular batch I didn’t make my own granola. I used a store brand granola cereal, Wegmans to be precise. If you’ve never been inside a Wegmans, you’re missing something. It’s like the Disneyland of grocery stores.

This particular batch of gorp took four boxes of almond granola. Since it didn’t have raisins, I added those.

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

Everything I added to the next step of the process was organic and raw if possible: sunflower seeds, almonds, cashews, dried cranberries, dehydrated green apples, and banana chips. The banana chips weren’t unsweetened for this batch, because my guys don’t like them. It looked like this, nutritious and fairly healthy.

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

I had to use two giant bowls because I was making a huge batch. If I was making this for myself, I’d add some organic coconut, cocoa nibs, and probably dark chocolate almonds and stop here.

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

Next is where I modified it for who wants it. If you’re into really healthy eating, hide your eyes because this is where things get sweet. I put in yogurt covered stuff (raisins, nuts), several types of M&Ms (Peanut, mini-baking ones, and peanut butter), Reese pieces because the recipients are big into peanut butter, a type of Boston Baked Bean candy, dark chocolate covered raisins and almonds, and a handful of spelt sticks.

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt

The Glitter Globe/Karfelt
This is one of the few things I actually make because I’d much rather write than cook. All this takes is gathering ingredients and stirring them together. I pack them into freezer bags and push the air out before sealing them, and BAM, Mom made something and fully expects points for it. 

So what do you think? Would you go healthy or not? What would your ideal gorp consist of?

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