Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Recipe: Homemade Granola


Granola is a staple in so many households, and is a nutritious and quick meal to start the day. If your short on time, you can always buy it packaged or in bulk at the store, but there's nothing better than the sweet, wafting smell of granola baking in the oven. Depending on what you choose to add to it, making it yourself can even cut down the cost considerably!

 There are countless ways to tweak this recipe according to your taste, but this is the basic formula. You can substitute a different fat for the butter (like Earth Balance, olive oil, or coconut oil), and could add different fruit or nuts (dried blueberries, dates, cranberries, walnuts, pecans). The sweetener is up to you, too, replacing the agave with honey, brown sugar, maple syrup, or any other natural alternative. Some people might want to add seeds (pumpkin, sesame, hemp) or different spices (ginger, allspice, cardamom).

This is what we used:

Dry ingredients
4 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup rasins
3/4 cup dried apples (chopped to smaller pieces)
1 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup coconut flakes
1 tsp cinnamon
a dash of salt

Wet ingredients
1/2 cup agave nectar
1 stick unsalted butter


Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees
2. Cover a large baking sheet with aluminum foil

3. Add all of the dry ingredients except the cinnamon and salt together in a large bowl and mix together with your hands.



4.   In a small saucepan, combine the butter, agave, cinnamon, and salt on medium heat for about four minutes or until the butter is melted and all ingredients are well mixed. Stir with a rubber spatula.



5. Add the dry ingredients in a mound on the baking sheet and pour hot mixture on top.


6. With a rubber spatula or your hands, mix the dry and wet ingredients until all of the oats are coated. Cover the baking sheet evenly with the mixture.


7. Bake for 15 minutes in a 300 degree oven and then remove baking sheet. With a rubber spatula, stir the granola around and then return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes, or until the granola has toasted to a golden brown.

8. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool -- about an hour. Once it's cooled the oats will clump together and form delicious clusters. Using a spatula, scoop the granola into a glass jar or plastic bag.



9. Serve with yogurt, or any kind of milk you prefer (dairy, soy, almond, hemp, rice).


The granola will keep for up to a couple months if stored properly in an airtight container. This recipe will make about 15-20 servings. *Note - the recipe was doubled in these images.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

July's New Products



We're constantly searching for new, hard-to-find products to add to the diverse inventory of the store. Whether it's a new local company like Brooklyn-based Common Good which is now supplying our bulk cleansers and soaps, or just a new-to-us product we've recently learned about, we are always looking for the highest quality products to bring to our customers. Here are some recent additions to our ever-growing inventory:

Jane Iredale Mineral Cosmetics - not only are these cosmetics naturally made and cruelty-free, but they also contain beneficial properties to help your skin! Every product in the line is multi-functional and easy to use, like the mineral powder which is a foundation, powder, concealer, and sunscreen all in one. It's also non-comedogenic and most products are oil-free. Jane Iredale's line is only sold in places with licensed cosmotologists on staff, and now that we have our comsmotologist Eden at the store, we are excited to be able to carry this beautiful line.




Andrew & Everett 100% Real Grated Parmesan Cheese - All of Andrew & Everett's premium natural cheeses are hormone free and made with antibiotic free milk. They partner with independent, small scale dairy farms to ensure the highest quality. The parmesan comes in a shaker for easy use, just like the Kraft cheese we had when we were young, but now you can eat it in good conscience. 





Ella's Kitchen Baby Brekkie - organic baby breakfast pouches. Not only are these breakfast pouches quick and easy for families on the go, but they're healthy and delicious, too! They're made from a blend of organic fruit purée, yogurt, and wholegrain rice to create a balanced meal to start your kid's day or give a natural burst of energy at any time throughout the day. 


Bob's Red Mill A leader in the highest quality whole grain products, Bob's Red Mill has been milling, testing, packaging, and distributing their cereals, mixes, flours, oats, granolas, and grains since 1978 (just two years after Perelandra opened!). Due to overwhelming customer requests, we have added two more products to the many we already carry: 

Gluten-Free Bread Mix - this easy mix can be made by hand or in a bread maker, and can even be made dairy-free. It makes loaf bread and is a great alternative for those who don't eat gluten but still love the smell and taste of freshly baked bread. This is just one of the 50+ gluten free products made by Bob's Red Mill. 


Creamy Wheat Farina Cereal - this delicious, quick-cooking hot cereal will "fill you up and keep you going throughout the morning," according to Bob's Red Mill. Great for adults, kids, and infants alike. 



Perelandra Juice Bar - Raspberry Beret Smoothie - made with organic raspberries, organic blueberries, organic lime, organic banana and coconut water. Cool down with a fresh, organic smoothie made fresh to order. This one is only available for a limited time, so get it while you can! 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Meet Eden Di Bianco, Perelandra's new in-store Cosmetologist!

At Perelandra, we are committed to offering the best customer service around and having the most knowledgeable staff you can find. We are always thinking "How can we be the best we can be?". In keeping with that commitment, we are so pleased to introduce our newest staff member, licensed cosmetologist Eden Di Bianco! Eden is an excellent addition to our staff, specializing in cruelty-free, natural and organic skin care, hair care and make-up. Eden trained at the Aveda Institute, and as a freelance hair and make-up artist and vegan, Eden has a special appreciation for natural products which are almost always cruelty-free. You can expect to see her regularly doing in-store skin care and make-up events (we'll let you know in advance on Facebook and Twitter @Perelandra Foods so you can sign up!), and you'll see her helping customers in our natural beauty department to find the best products for their skin and hair types, too. Stop in to say hello, or get a quick complimentary skin care consultation! Need more info? Give us a call at 718-855-6068 or shoot us an email: Info at PerelandraNatural dot com.