Growing up, I was always told not to waste food. I remember not being able leave the table before I finished a meal or being told that I couldn't have dessert until I finished my food. With my sweet tooth, not having dessert was serious punishment, so I learned to take less if I couldn't finish it. To this day, it hurts me to throw away food. When something spoils, which is pretty rare, I wince as I toss it into the trash.
In our current economy, with food prices soaring and the general state of the world, I feel even worse throwing away food. Recently, I found one more way to avoid throwing away food and save some money in the process.
When it comes to cold cereal, I'm very picky. It needs to be crunchy and not get soggy in milk. I like granola or other cereals with a great deal of crunch and texture. But once you get to the bottom of the box or container, no matter how nice and substantial the cereal once was, only powdery cereal bits remain. For a while, I used to throw those remaining cereal bits away. If felt so wrong. But it felt even worse thinking about the soggy disaster that would ensue if I poured milk on it.
Then one day a few months ago, I just couldn't bring myself to throw it away anymore. Food costs more each week and is becoming more scarce in the world. I started pouring the cereal bits into a plastic container and keeping it for something. I wasn't sure what exactly.
Last week, at G's urging, I decided to make scones. What if I used the cereal bits to take the place of some of the flour? How bad could it be? There were several different types of cerals all mixed together and it measured about half a cup.
Also I had some sunflower seed nut butter that I wanted to try, so I figured I'd substitute some of the Earth Balance, which would add some more protein. I had just bought some dried papaya chunks and decided to cut them up and use them instead of raisins. Then I decided that I'd try using brown sugar instead of regular sugar and really change things up.
The dough was a joy to work with. The texture, color, and fragrance are wonderful. I hated to take my hands off it! It was such a nice dough that I may try and re-work it into a pie crust. Here's the recipe. I hope you like it as much as we did!
Repurposed Cereal + Papaya Scones
3 T Earth Balance (or butter or margarine)
2 T sunflower seed nut butter
scant 1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup vanilla rice milk
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cups diced dried papaya
1/2 cup cereal bits
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
dash of salt
2 tsp. baking powder
Melt Earth Balance and sunflower seed nut butter. Add sugar, egg, vanilla rice milk, and vanilla extract. Combine. Add papaya, cereal bits, salt, and baking powder. Stir well and add flour. Combine well. Turn dough onto a baking sheet. Press dough together with your hands and work into a circle. Cut the dough into eight pieces. Bake at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes or until lightly browned.