Apricot Chamomile Granola and Seven Links!

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First, I want to thank you all for the wonderful birthday and blogiversary wishes you left me! I had a great birthday with amazing friends, delicious food, and I am totally optimistic about what 31 has in store for me!

I also want to share my “seven links” with all of you! I have seen a bunch of bloggers partaking in the seven links challenge and was ecstatic when Manu tagged me! Woop whoop! The rules are simple… Provide links for posts in the seven categories below and then “tag” up to five bloggers to participate as well. So, here goes nothing!

The most beautiful post: Empamosas. This may not be the most colorful dish on my blog, but something about the lines in this photo, along with that golden crust makes me vote this as one of my most beautiful posts.

The most popular post: Cilantro-Harissa Grilled Corn. This was a total surprise! It was SUPER easy to make, but for some reason folks LOVED this post! It makes me really happy that a vegan, vegetable (and simple) dish has been my most popular dish to date.

The most controversial post: Thai Tea Oatmeal. Folks were completely divided on this post… and honestly, I just couldn’t understand why! Oatmeal takes the flavor of whatever you use to make it. I love Thai tea. Why wouldn’t Thai tea oatmeal be wonderful? Well, I thought it was, but many folks were weary. Sigh.

The most helpful post:ย Tapped: 5 Reasons to Think Twice about Drinking Bottled Water. This was one of my earliest posts where I reviewed a documentary on bottled water. It was a super popular post at the time.

The post that was surprisingly successful: Hazelnut-Crusted Sweet Chili Tofu. Like so many of my dishes this was a complete shot in the dark. I had a bit of this, and a tad of that, and was super hungry. The result was some of the best tofu that I’ve ever made. I loved the sweet and spicy and crunchy combo!

The post that did not get the attention it deserved: Guava Bread Pudding. I made this dessert when I was in my “trying things I do not like phase.” I realized that there are a slew of foods that I didn’t like when I was younger that I actually like now. I had a feeling that bread pudding might be one of those foods, so I tried my hand at it. Perhaps this dessert didn’t get the attention it deserved because of my lackluster photo of it…

The post I am most proud of: Watermelon-Ginger Soup.ย This was the first time I made Foodbuzz Top 9!!!

And now, for the five bloggers I am tagging (It was really hard picking just five!!!):

Greg at Crostini and Chianti

Sandra at The Sweet Sensations

Anne at From My Sweet Heart

Natalie at FoodblogandtheDog

Junia at Mis Pensamientos

And now… finally… onto my granola ๐Ÿ˜‰ย This is my first granola and I can totally see how coming up with different flavor combinations could get addicting. I love using tea in dishes, so I paired relaxing chamomile with sweet apricot and hearty nuts. Making your own granola is surprisingly easy and you can control the amount of sugar/sweetener you use, which I particularly liked!

Don’t forget about my giveaway! I’ll be choosing the two winners on Friday.

Happy Tuesday folks!

Apricot Chamomile Granolaย (printable recipe)


3 cups old fashioned rolled oats

3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut

2/3 cup dried apricots–chopped

1/3 pineapple chips (or dried pineapple)–chopped

1/3 cup dried cranberries–chopped

1/3 cup salted and roasted cashews–chopped

1/3 cup salted and roasted sunflower seeds

1/4 cup Earth Balance (or margarine/butter)

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons agave

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

leaves from 1-2 chamomile tea bags


*Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Add oats and coconut to a large baking pan. Toast the oats and coconut for 10 minutes, stirring twice during that time. Set aside. Chop remaining fruit and nuts.

*Add oats, coconut, fruit, nuts, cinnamon, and chamomile tea leaves to a large bowl. Stir to combine.

*In a medium saucepan, heat Earth Balance, agave, and brown sugar over medium low heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat. Stir in balsamic vinegar and vanilla. Add the sweet mixture to the oats mixture. Stir completely. Press into a large baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until granola is golden brown. Remove, let cool, stir to break up granola, and enjoy!!!

Written by

Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DCโ€™s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantraโ€”love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!


  1. Awesome granola and GREAT 7 picks!

  2. Nice round up- I think the Empanosas was how I found you? I can’t remember any more… The granola looks super yummy- I love apricot in granola, it adds SOOO much flavor! So cool that you used tea too- nice job Tiff!

  3. Yes, the Empanosas are gorgeous. The photography is exceptional. I think the guava picture is nice too. Maybe because my own photography is so sub-par (seriously, I know my strengths and weaknesses, and this is a weakness :sigh::).

    Anyhow, I do love your granola, especially the apricot part of it. I’d probably have to leave out the chamomile since I’m not a tea fan, but bring the rest on!

  4. The Thai Tea Oatmeal sounds interesting, I never thought of it and certainly don’t object. If I remember I will try with coffee since I don’t have instant tea at present

  5. One bite of this and I would be addicted to eating it. You loaded this baby with yumminess. I would like eat this warmed with a bit of almond milk, yes even though it’s hotter than a biscuit outside!

  6. Such a great idea for a combo. I rarely think of putting these kinds of interesting flavors together so great job! I’ve been on a granola making kick lately so this one is going on the list! Also…buzzlove ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Nice roundup up-your empanosas post is the one that always comes to mind.
    This granola looks so tasty! For some reason store bought granola cereal has a lot of salt, thanks for sharing this no salt homemade version-yum!

    • Yeah, I used salted nuts, so no need to add additional salt!

  8. awww thanks for tagging me! ๐Ÿ˜€ i love the posts you chose. you have such a eclectic creative palate for food. that hazelnut chili tofu looks fantastic! even the thai oatmeal and the guava bread pudding. all things that i would have attempted too ๐Ÿ˜€ have a great day tiffany!

  9. Thanks so much for tagging me Tiff I’ll have to get thinking now! That crispy tofu looks amazing, I’ve never got on very well with tofu, maybe this is one to try again with! I love the tea addition to your granola, I’m going to do that with my Jasmin green tea next time, exciting!!

  10. Oh, I love these 7 links posts! Great selections! And I’m totally in love with your granola…just the way I like it…with oats, coconut and dried fruit. YUM.

  11. Oh what a great round up..everything looks awesome Tiff!

  12. Yum – this granola sounds delicious, and so does that Thai oatmeal. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I love reading everyone’s 7 links, and it’s fun to go back in time as a blogger, to reflect.

  13. You know I like weird oatmeal (zucchini bread oatmeal is awesome in it – I swear!!!)… but I dunno about tea. LOL!

    I bet the balsamic in that granola is awesome. I’ve never thought of adding it before!

  14. Mmmm.. I love making granola too and this recipe sounds so good. And so much fun seeing your 7 posts. Thanks so much for sharing. And happy belated birthday!!

  15. All of these recipes looks so beautiful and delicious! Especially the empamosas, so golden and just begging to be eaten right off the screen!

  16. these dishes look wonderful lovely post

  17. such fun links! i love that empamosas and also that grilled corn.. so yummy. This is yet another amazing granola recipe.

  18. Mmm… I love granola and the use of chamomile is really interesting. Your guava bread pudding looks lovely- I would have given it some attention ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. I have had dreams about that corn since you first posted it. This granola looks great too. Cannot wait to try this spin with the chamomile.

  20. Granola with balsamic vinegar, are you sure you don’t want to change your most controversial recipe? ๐Ÿ™‚ My daughter just came home from Maryland and delivered a load of dried fruit and nuts so I am going to have to try this.
    Thanks for the challenge! This is going to be hard. I am always surprised when one of my recipes turns out. The recipes I think will do the best usually do the worst. Well I will have something to think about for the rest of the week.

    • LOL! I’ve been on a balsamic in my sweet stuff kick! I figure… we use lemon for acid in sweet things, why not use vinegar????

  21. Some delicious looking recipes there Tiffany. Plus the granola sounds fantastic! I have been meaning to make some granola for my family but keep putting it off. I think you’ve just inspired me ๐Ÿ˜€

  22. Tiffany! First of all THIS granola is getting made THIS weekend! It is outrageous! Great combinations of sweet and salty….and my favorite…COCONUT! And I remember empamosas! I am still contemplating a dessert version of that just because I LOVE that word! And thank you for tagging me in 7 Links! I’m getting it together now! Thanks for a Happy Tuesday! : )

  23. So glad to read your 7 links! I had missed the bottled water post… I don’t even think I was blogging yet! hehehe The empamosas are the most beautiful (even though there is no recipe that is not beautiful on this blog)!!

    I have never made granola at home! I love chamomile though… I should seriously try this recipe! ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Nice line up! I can see why that corn recipe was the favorite! It looks so good, as does your granola of course! ๐Ÿ™‚

  25. This sounds like it would be awesome for breakfast, maybe with some chamomile tea ๐Ÿ˜‰

  26. Fun seven links and the granola sounds amazing!

  27. Each one of the recipes is fabulous, oozing with taste and flavors.

  28. Your empamosas were a huge hit, so many people copied them! This granola sounds wonderful, too. Great flavours.

  29. I love the idea of using chamomile tea in this granola! I am a granola addict and always trying new combos of flavors. This sounds delicious!

  30. I love how your granola has apricot in it. What a nice addition Tiffany! Not to mention it has coconut in it too, yum!

  31. What a cool idea! And don’t worry, I still totally remember that guava bread pudding; it definitely got *my* attention… ๐Ÿ™‚

  32. That granola recipe sounds tops! Your bread pudding looked super too.

  33. I need to make my own granola some time. This looks great! Love your 7 links too! That corn sounds so good!

  34. You Go Girl, Top 9!!!!!

  35. Hi Tiffany, Happy belated birthday and bloggersary. Sorry I’m late, but better then never right:) I love your 7 links. By the way my sister saw your Empamosas on the YBR roundup and said she couldn’t wait to try them, will keep you posted.
    The granola sounds amazing and I really want to try it, love both apricots and chamomile. Congrats on the Top 9 today ๐Ÿ™‚

  36. UM…YUM!! I’ll take the granola for breakfast, please, and the guava bread pudding for tonight’s dinner! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Congrats on Top 9, my friend!

  37. I love your guava bread pudding!! This is a fun event, I’ve been tagged too so I’m going to have to get working on my list too now, haha ๐Ÿ™‚

  38. You really made me put my thinking cap on with the 7 links challenge. After looking at your awesome links I knew I couldn’t half step. I finally finished it and thank you soooo much for always thinking of me.

    • Heading over RIGHT now! ๐Ÿ˜€

  39. Tiffany, I’m so happy to read your 7 links. I think I didn’t read a couple of your posts since I wasn’t blogging back then. But I enjoyed reading them now and this was a great list! I remember the watermelon ginger soup. It’s so you! Very unique and I’ll never forget that… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  40. What a fantastic line up…loved the bottled water post ๐Ÿ™‚

  41. I love the flavor combinations in your granola, especially the addition of balsamic vinegar! Just gorgeous:-) I have to tell you, the post on guava bread pudding….OH MY THAT SOUNDS AMAZING!!!! Hugs, Terra

  42. A great list! The empamosas are gorgeous!

  43. Thanks everyone for your comments!