Besides rekindling memories of music and crafts, the festival may remind you of the food you once enjoyed. Before the current passion for grazing, pre-yuppie hippies had another craving – munchies. I have set out to bring back some of these treats – both sweet and savory – by following current nutritional beliefs.
Honey sweetened granola sometimes lost its crunch. When the big cereal companies began producing it, they sweetened theirs with sugar. This made the cereal reliably crunchy, but too sweet for serious munchers. A judicious quantity of maple syrup makes a perfect crunchy granola.
Corn chips out of a bag were a sound solution for the munchies. But serious concern about the salt, fat, colorings and preservatives used in them resulted in their loss of popularity. Freshly fried tortilla chips provide the crunch and flavor and satisfaction of packaged ones – without all the drawbacks.
A few years ago Acapulco was known for its gold. Today it is best known for its green, as in guacamole. Onion dip used to be made from sour cream and dried onion soup mix. My updated version uses a hint of straight garlic in less fattening yogurt. Either of these eaten with freshly fried tortilla chips will satisfy the most severe attack of the munchies.
- 8 cups or 2 1/2 pounds
- 15 minutes preparation
- 20 minutes baking
Sesame seeds are a good source of today’s “in” nutrient, calcium.
- 6 cups large flake rolled oats
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 1 cup hazelnuts or cashews
- 1/2 cup sesame seeds
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 1 cup raisins or chopped apricots
Toss oats and oil. Toss in syrup. Then toss in nuts, sesame seeds, cinnamon and salt. Let rest for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 300 degreesF. Spread mixture onto two baking sheets. (Shiny ones are less likely to cause burning than dark ones.) Put in oven in such a way that one is not directly over the other.
Bake for 10 minutes. Remove sheets from oven and mix by lifting granola from the edges to the centre. Bake five more minutes. Toss again. Bake only until granola is aromatic and beginning to brown, about five more minutes. It burns easily.
Remove from oven. Dry and crisp with periodic tossing. When cool, toss in raisins. Store in sealed jar. Enjoy plain or with milk and fruit.
- 1 large bowl
- 10 minutes preparation
Making a bowl of these triangular corn chips requires little more effort than a bowl of popcorn. Many brands of tortillas are available in the frozen food section of Mexican and natural food stores. Most taste so good, salt is unnecessary.
- 2 cups vegetable oil for frying
- 1 lb. tortillas, thawed
In a frying pan, heat oil to 375 degreesF. (A piece of tortilla dropped into the oil should sink to the bottom then quickly rise, bubbling, to the surface. If the oil is too cool it will lie on the bottom; too hot it will just bubble on the surface.) Cut the stack of tortillas into sixths or eighths.
Drop a dozen or so tortilla pieces into hot oil. Stir frequently until barely browned, about 10 seconds. Lift out with a slotted spoon and drain excess oil on paper. Repeat. Serve plain or with guacamole and garlic dips.
- 2 cups
- 10 minutes preparation
Summer’s warty-skinned black Hauss avocados provide the richest flavor.
- 3 medium, ripe avocados
- 1-2 hot chilies
- 1 small tomato, diced
- 1 green onion, sliced
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp. salt
Slice avocados in half, remove pit and scoop out the flesh. Coarsely mash with a potato masher. Remove stem and seeds from chili and push through a garlic press. Stir this into mashed avocado with tomato, onion, lemon juice and salt. Serve right away.
- 2 cups
- 5 minutes preparation
Whole-milk yogurt (4% B.F.) is usually thick and creamy. If yours is runny, line a colander with a clean tea towel and pour in the yogurt. Within an hour or two enough whey should have drained to give a thick consistency. Fresh chives provide a contemporary garnish.
- 500 mL whole-milk yogurt
- 2 cloves garlic
- Pinch salt
- Chives for garnish
Drain yogurt if necessary. Peel and push garlic through garlic press. Stir with salt into yogurt. The flavor is more mellow if the mixture sits for an hour before serving.