For those of you unfamiliar with what a London Fog is, it's simply a tea latte featuring earl grey and vanilla. I was obsessed with pricey London Fogs in university and every time I smell earl grey, it takes me back (can well all agree that putting a Starbucks on campus is enabling?). I've been to London, England a couple of times, once asking for a London Fog while visiting. No one knew what I was talking about (*crickets*) and I had to coach them through it. After this hard-hitting investigative endeavour, I've decided that North Americans made it up -breaking news!
I learned the "correct" way to steep different teas, the health benefits, caffeine content, growing regions, harvesting, drying, roasting, smoking (smoked tea is absolutely not "my cup of tea"), and more. Tea happens to be incredibly health-promoting, and not just green tea. Green tea appears in the news so frequently because it's the most studied of all tea varieties, not necessarily the healthiest. With the exception of herbal teas or "tisanes" (yes, that's their scientific name), all tea is similar health-wise across the board. Pick your poison, you can't go wrong. All types of tea are rich in polyphenols, flavonoids, and catechins. Tea contains a few minerals and almost 20 amino acids. Additionally, it has also been shown maintain a healthy brain, digestion, increase longevity (thanks to all of those potent antioxidants), and can help to calm and relax. Time to get your steep on.
While I find granola a little too sweet for my palate at breakfast, I've been eating this particular blend as an afternoon snack with hemp milk, coconut yogurt, perfectly plump local blueberries from down the road (So fresh. I've been downing about 2 pints-worth per day!), banana, and almond butter. Additionally, (a bonus recipe within a recipe!) the hemp milk in the bottom of the bowl turns in "London Fog Milk," which someone really needs to start selling. This snack, oh boy, hits the spot. My sister loves this granola on her salad as a sweet crouton. A savoury combo that I dig, too -don't knock it until you try it! One more thing, definitely try to get your hands on some raw buckwheat groats as they add a little "snap, crackle, pop" to the mix.
London Fog Granola with Hazelnuts and Apricots
Makes approximately 4 cups
½ cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups rolled oats (wheat-free or gluten-free, if you like)
1 cup raw buckwheat groats
2/3 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
1/3 cup dried apricots, sliced
1 tbsp loose leaf early grey tea or your favourite loose leaf tea
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
In a small bowl, combine melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Pour coconut oil mixture over the oat mixture, stir to combine. Spread evenly on prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes. Toss. Bake for an additional 15 minutes. Toss again. Bake for 10 more minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely. Store granola in an airtight container in the cupboard for up to 2 weeks, or freeze for 1 to 2 months.