I didn't grow up in a football-watching family--like, at all--but when I fell in love with a man whose heart beats wildly for the game, I'd like to think that I caught on quickly. One basic truth that I've absorbed over the years is this: Super Bowl Sunday is the last official holiday of the winter season, and deserves its own annual celebration. Most years, this means simply setting out a spread that includes the holy trifecta that is cold beer, salty snacks and creamy dips....tasty, but predictable fare. But what if, just this once, we did things a little differently? This year, I'm imagining hosting a late morning breakfast celebration that spills out into the street or the park for a pickup game of flag football among friends, then finally stretches into an afternoon game-watching party. Who's up for joining me in a game day breakfast party?
Because this is after all a holiday, Super Bowl morning breakfast is no ordinary breakfast. It's a little bit more indulgent than usual, full of treats that combine the wholesome goodness of nuts and dried fruit with the thrill of rich dark and milk chocolates. To bring this chocolate-inspired breakfast fantasy to life, I teamed up with my friends at Ghirardelli, my go-to favorite for finely crafted chocolate with an admirable bean-to-bar ethic. Having just discovered the joys of their line of new Chocolate Covered snacks (seriously, OBSESSED), I made these the centerpiece of my breakfast table, rounded out by a top-your-own-yogurt bar. Available in five delicious flavors, their Chocolate Covered confections include coconut clusters, almonds and cashews, and whole dried blueberries with a hint of Tahitian vanilla, all enrobed in Ghirardelli's famous milk and dark chocolates--perfect for hand-to-mouth snacking all day long on game day!
Inspired by these flavors, I created my own dark chocolate & coconut granola that's equally perfect for snacking on right out of the bowl or for sprinkling over a serving of creamy Greek yogurt, as well as a simple blueberry-vanilla compote that bursts with color and flavor. Want to set out your own irresistible chocolate breakfast buffet on Super Bowl Sunday? Stock up on luxurious Chocolate Covered snacks and set each out in its own pretty bowl...then watch them disappear all day long! Add a simple, serve-yourself buffet of bowls of plain yogurt accompanied by tempting toppings such as roasted cashews, banana chips, dried fruits--and of course, homemade granola and fruit compote--and you have a winning combination for your game day crowd!
Many thanks go out to Ghirardelli for sponsoring this post and allowing me to try each of their Chocolate Covered snacks in order to develop ideas for this fun, celebratory breakfast party! All opinions expressed in this post are, as always, 100% my own. For more on Ghirardelli Chocolate (including coupons and shopping options), follow along on their site, or get social with them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup shaved coconut
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 beaten egg white
1/4 cup dark chocolate shavings
Preheat oven to 300 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Heat coconut oil and brown sugar in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat until sugar dissolves, add cocoa powder & salt and stir until these are dissolved as well. Remove pan from heat and let cool slightly, then stir in oats, coconut & almonds until well combined. Fold in beaten egg white, spread granola on parchment (allow large clumps to form).
Bake at 300 for 25-30 minutes, remove from oven and sprinkle with dark chocolate shavings while still warm. Toss gently to combine, being careful to keep some clumps of granola intact. Let cool to room temperature, then store in an airtight container.
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine blueberries, sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan, bring just barely to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and let simmer for eight minutes. Remove from heat, add vanilla extract and let cool to room temperature. Serve immediately, or else store in refrigerator in airtight container. This makes a wonderful drizzle for yogurt, slices of freshly baked bread, cake, or vanilla ice cream.