I hate going away. Both ways it is always sad. If you are the leaver, the one who left a place or a person, there always is a part of you, even just a molecule or maybe an atom of your being, that will attach itself to that somewhere or someone, leaving an emptiness in you. And if you are the leavee, the one left by somebody else whether by choice or by circumstance, well, this can even be more painful.
Last Saturday, I was a leavee. The Husband left for his much deserved annual home leave, while I was left here in our wee home in the desert to, well, work as most of us, expats are here for.
I knew he was leaving and was honestly quite excited to have time for myself, but as I’ve said earlier, being a leavee is always painful. I sent him off with a kiss as he was whisked away by the taxi to the airport. As I closed our wee home’s front door behind me, I found myself crying into my favorite pillow, imagining it was The Husband. Our wee home felt empty. I was alone and lonely.
But I knew I had to deal with this loneliness head on as this could not continue for the next two weeks. I brushed my salty tears away and went into a cooking frenzy in our wee kitchen. Somehow cooking has started to become my go-to zen activity, whenever I go through a roller coaster emotional ride.
For starters, I needed something crunchy to munch on when will feel bouts of loneliness. So I made my version of 80 Breakfast’s homemade granola…
- 3 cups of oats. I used instant oats, which we had a ton of. But I’d recommend using spelt oats for more texture (as if there isn’t enough texture going on in granola)
- 2 cups of trail mix. I used the same trail mix in my bread pudding, which had Iranian barberries.
- 1 cup flax seeds
- 1 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup soft brown sugar
- 1 cup chunky peanut butter
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Double line your baking pan with aluminum foil. Then pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees.
- In an extra large bowl, mix all dry ingredients: oats, trail mix, flax seeds, salt and cinnamon.
- In a small saucepan over low heat, mix and melt the brown sugar with the maple syrup until silky smooth. Then remove from the heat and add the peanut butter. Mix, mix, mix everything until there are no peanut butter lumps and clumps.
- Pour the sugar-maple-PB sauce into the chunky oats mixture. Then mix until each grain / nut / dried fruit is coated in the brown sugar sauce. This will require a bit of physical exertion, so work it!
- Then add the oil and mix again. Maybe use the other arm, so that both of your arms get a workout. Hehehe!
- Transfer the mixture into your baking pan and spread evenly.
- Put the baking pan into the oven and just wait for 30-40 minutes, occasionally stirring up the mixture so that everything gets baked evenly.
- Then once done, let the granola cool down before transferring to jars / plastic containers for future use.
When the granola was done, I tried some in a bowl with milk, munching along while I watched a movie, bundled up in a blanket and curled on our couch like a stereotypical lonely person. Sigh. One more week until The Husband is back. More cooking to come…
Delirious about delicious,