Cross-Country Trail Mix - Creating a healthy snack


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When I was loading up my car to drive across the country from Oklahoma to North Carolina, two entirely separate needs crossed paths, and I ended up with a delicious and healthy trail mix!


First of all, I had to clear out the pantry and refrigerator. I’d used up, given away and boxed up a number of items, but still had some nuts, seeds and dried fruits to deal with. 


Secondly, I planned to drive all day, stopping at roadside parks to have a light lunch. I had my dog with me, which really limits one’s dining out options! By doing so, I would save time and money. I had a cooler with veggies, cheese, crackers, yogurt and more, but I wanted something healthy and handy to munch on in between times or if I couldn’t stop.


As I contemplated the above two problems, the light bulb went off! The idea of Bobbi’s Cross Country Trail Mix was born! No, I have not brought this to market, and perhaps never will (unless someone out there wants to help me and has the know-how to do so), but I continue to make by own creative trail mix months later. Each time it’s different, but it’s always fresh and nutrient dense! 


The first step you can take to make a healthier trail mix is to roast the nuts yourself. Once nuts have been roasted, they will begin to deteriorate and eventually go rancid, depending on how well and for how long they are stored. So, buy raw nuts and roast them as needed to ensure they are fresh. Also, most roasted nuts use oils and salt, which you really don’t need. 


For today’s mix, I decided to roast some hazelnuts, cashews and almonds.

I spread them out on a small tray to roast in the toaster oven (which I love).


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I roasted them at a low heat (275°F) until they were golden and smelled good, about 7-10 minutes.


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Now, if you want to be a purist about this, roast each type of nut separately, as the optimal time for each varies. I probably got the hazelnuts just right, overcooked the cashews, and undercooked the almonds, but only by a little bit!


Be sure to let the nuts cool completely, especially if you like to add dark chocolate chips like I did!


Play around with some of the cool, exotic berries available now, like goji berries, gooseberries, mulberries, etc. My favorite — mulberries! All of these berries can be expensive, but you can stretch them out by adding a small amount to your trail mix for an occasional, blissful bite!


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Make up your own trail mix by adding some of your favorite things. 


Here’s what I put in my latest creation: pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, almonds, gooseberries, mulberries, dark chocolate chips, dried cranberries.


Now the challenge is to only eat a spoonful!

© Bobbi Mullins 2011, All rights reserved. FOOD FITNESS FAITH™