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Cook's Corner

  • Baker tries it all with grandmother's recipes
    The Cookie Nook is all about family. From the desserts owner Michelle Noe creates using recipes from her late grandmother to the window decorations done by her mother, Noe’s family is involved with the bakery in downtown
  • Consultants on mission to get city fit
    Chris Blake is ready for a fight. The local consultant is one of the men behind Operation F4:
  • Consultants on mission to get city fit
    Chris Blake is ready for a fight.The local consultant is one of the men behind Operation F4: Fight for a Fitter Fort, a program to promote a healthier community that has been endorsed by Mayor Tom Henry.

Web exclusive: Recipes from Mary Willems-Akers

Blueberry and Pecan Granola

1/2 cup coconut

4 cups old-fashioned oats

3/4 cup chopped pecans

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 cup water

1/3 cup honey

1/3 cup maple syrup

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 1/2 cups dried blueberries (or any other dried fruit or combination of dried fruits)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine coconut in a bowl with oats, pecans, salt and cinnamon. In a small saucepan on the stove, combine the water, honey, maple syrup and canola oil; bring just to a boil. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry mixture, stirring well to coat. Spoon the mixture onto a jellyroll pan and spread evenly. Place the pan in the center of the preheated oven and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until lightly toasted. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Once cool, add dried fruit and store in an airtight container. Makes 5 cups.

Sweet and Spicy Almonds

2 1/2 cups unblanched almonds

1/4 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon water

1 teaspoon olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread almonds on a rimmed baking sheet; toast until fragrant, about 10 minutes. In a large bowl, combine sugar, salt and cayenne pepper. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook honey and water with olive oil, stirring until combined, 1 minute. Add almonds; toss to coat. Transfer nuts to sugar mixture. Do not scrape extra glaze into bowl. Toss to coat. Cool in a single layer. Store in an airtight container; will keep for up to 2 weeks. Makes 2 1/2 cups.