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Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.Granola made light and almost fluffy – not two words we associate with granola, huh? – with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

Feel free to skip on down to the recipe, but if you are a blogger you might wish to read on…

For the past couple of months my heart has been heavy. With something akin to dread I have checked my phone, my laptop….my quickened pulse. If you are a fellow blogger, slogging away creating content of which you are proud to share with others, perhaps you have felt this heaviness, this weariness, this dread.

In late May I discovered that a site was taking my blog posts – lock stock and barrel. Not only posts as they were published, but posts from my archives. At first it was a few. This isn’t uncommon. I have the odd post taken without permission, as I’m sure do you if you are a blogger. When spotted I politely contact the infringing site and ask them to please remove the post. Mostly everyone is okay with this, not realising that they are breaking the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, a law that puts in practise, and expands on, two 1996 World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) treaties. Some however call me names or tell me that they will no longer follow me (I doubt that they did in the first place). I can deal with that.

malt-granola4

Left to right: barley flakes, jumbo rolled oats, puffed quinoa

With this particular site, the taking and posting of my work increased to over 20 a day. Twenty full posts in one day, complete with all of my images and internal links to myself – the best way to know if people are taking your work, btw – as well as links to others. My comments to the offending website, their host site in Canada and even to the host’s Twitter account fell on closed eyes. They even had the audacity to publish links to stolen posts on their Facebook page. Just over 100 posts found their way onto this site.

I contacted a solicitor, who kindly gave advice and was on standby with a Cease and Desist letter – although we agreed that it might not have much use in another country, and I thought perhaps contacting their few advertisers might be the best thing. What advertiser would want to have anything to do with pirated work? But I decided to give it one last shot on my own through Google themselves.

A Facebook friend had given me a link to the correct department (removals), and so I started filling in the forms. By now I had been spending a couple of hours every few days futilely filling in “abuse” forms on the host site. However I was confident that Google would have to do something – I mean they were my own posts and someone else was republishing them en masse. So, as the weekend approached, I felt happier and lighter of heart. I might have even smiled. But I wasn’t prepared for a sharp letter from Google questioning not only the validity of my claim but also whether I was the legitimate copyright holder. On top of it there was the suggestion that I would have to pay damages if I was not the legitimate copyright holder. I felt sick. malt-syrup

After a tense weekend trying to put this letter to the back of my mind I also noticed something. The stealing had stopped. I don’t know if the Google letter had been just an automatic one designed to weed out the troublemakers (if you don’t like a blogger, going to Lord Google is a good way to rattle them), or if they really couldn’t immediately see that I was who I said I was. What I think was going on was that other victims of this catchily-named site had been writing to Lord Google, too. I know of at least one person who was having posts stolen at the same time as me.

Speaking to techy folk it seems that this kind of thing goes on all of the time. Legit sites like mine are targeted and programmes are set up to take posts on publication and to scythe through archives. Apparently we aren’t to take it personally (!!) even when the stealing ramps up to harassment levels.

What is the point of these pirate sites? Who knows. 

The point of this rambling path to an actual recipe is not to give up if you have your posts snatched from your site, or images stolen and repurposed. Don’t just assume that you can’t do anything about people and sites stealing your content. Big anonymous sites and hosts have to comply with the law, not just us little one-man band guys.Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

While still worrying about the Google letter I had a Facebook message from the other person I knew who was going through similar agonies with this site. She asked if I had tried opening the site. I immediately went to it and saw the blessed words “This site can’t be reached”. And one week later there is no message at all. And no site. I don’t believe this is the end, such sites sprout Hydra-like once cut off. But I think I’m ready for them now.

It has been stressful, but I’m proud of myself for sticking with it and getting the resolution that I wanted: not just for my recipes to be removed but for this bogus, piratical site – built entirely of the posts of others – to be taken down.

Now, for the reason you are really here – and thank you for reading my ramble if indeed you did – malty, yummy granola, made light with quinoa puffs. Because, let’s face it, we both deserve it.

Have you had issues with Internet pirates? How did you handle it? Do you think a granola recipe is good enough payment for reading a self-indulgent post?

Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

Malted Whole Grain and Puffed Quinoa Granola

  • Servings: one large Kilner jar
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Granola made light and almost fluffy – not two words we associate with granola, huh? – with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

400g whole jumbo oats (I use Duchy organic brand)

100g barley flakes (I get Real Foods own-brand ones)

15g quinoa or amaranth puffs (I use Biona mostly – at Real Foods)

100g walnuts, roughly chopped

50g each of pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and rough-chopped pecans

120ml malt syrup

4 tbsp dark brown sugar

4 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp sea salt

Method:

1. Heat oven to 140C fan/160C. Line 2-3 rimmed baking trays with parchment paper (my oven is small so I use two).

2.  In a very large saucepan gently heat the malt syrup, olive oil, sea salt and brown sugar until all is liquid and slightly bubbling. Stir well and immediately add in the dry ingredients. Fold over and over with a large spoon until all is lightly coated – really reach under and pull everything to the top. Pour onto the waiting, lined trays.

3. Bake the granola for 15 minutes, stir the granola (I use a spatula to draw the outside bits to the middle and push the middle bits out) and swap oven shelves. Do this again 15 minutes later. Then bake for five to 10 more minutes until it all looks dry and golden, but not at all burned. Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

4. Remove from the oven and let the granola cool completely on the trays before decanting into an airtight jar or other container. Keeps for several weeks. It never lasts that long though.

Soft food diet: Add 3 tbsp of peanut butter, tahini or almond butter to the liquid mix, and eliminate the nuts. When eating the granola soak in milk (warmed and allowed to cool as it sits on the cereal) until the softness that you need. Just because you need a soft food diet doesn’t mean you can’t have granola!

Granola made light and almost fluffy - not two words we associate with granola, huh? - with the addition of quinoa puffs. We love it not only for breakfast but as a wholesome snack the whole family will enjoy. Tastes great coating a frozen chocolate covered banana. Just saying.

Keep In Touch!

You can also find me on:

Instagram – behind the scenes with my recipe development (triumphs and tragedies!) and mini, Instagram-only recipes;

Twitter – tweeting on health, nutrition and global news, as well as sharing other bloggers’ content;

Facebook – posting on the latest nutrition and food stories, as well as sharing recipe links; 

Pinterest – loads of boards on food, travel, food writing, blogging, health and novel ingredients;

Huffington Post – writing bespoke recipes and opinion pieces on my own Huff Post blog

57 thoughts on “Malted Whole Grain and Quinoa Granola + Fighting (and Winning Against) Internet Pirates

  1. You go girl! You have every right to protect your fabulous recipes, photos, and sensible nutrition advice. I’m sorry you have had to deal with this but thank you for standing up for all of us.
    Tracey

    1. Aw thank you Tracey. Lovely to hear from you. I feel like a bad-ass warrior now! Except I am currently drinking green tea with a cat on my lap. I doubt Boudicca did that. 😉

  2. moominkat says:

    What a rotten time you’ve had, I hope that’s it with pirates for a good long while. But pleased you’ve shared as I wanted to understand what’s been going on. Ps. The granola sounds delicious!

    1. Thank you Katherine. It’s been wearing but I hope the post is a salutory one – with a happy ending too. I hope you try the granola. I got my malt syrup at Holland & Barrett and the puffs at Real Foods. I think H&B would have the puffs too but I already had them when I bought the syrup. 🙂

  3. Two thumbs up to you for sticking to it and seeing it to the end! Hopefully they will not be back to bother you again. It’s shocking to know that anyone could gain graitfication from stealing someone elses work and passing it off as their own. No talent, no feelings, no gumption to be creative. They need a good liver clenase! lol Great post and thank you for the head’s up!

    1. What a wonderfully kind comment, Connie. Thank you so much. They need more than a liver cleanse though!! I am thinking another kind of cleanse. With tubes 😉

  4. silviamagda says:

    Delicious recipe and amazing pictures 🙂

    1. Thank you, Silvia. 🙂

  5. Andy Anderson says:

    Brilliant work Mrs A – super proud of you! Mr A

    1. Thanks for putting up with me xx

  6. I don’t know why I never make my own granola at home, but after seeing your post I’m definitely going to try! I need to buy barley flakes and malt syrup 🙂

    1. Weird fact: you can buy malt syrup at old-fashioned chemists, with the weight gain stuff. It is an old-fashioned “invalid” food that is still recommended for those with poor appetite. But health food stores are the more obvious choice. Quinoa puffs are defs not in the chemist!

  7. What a horrible experience-I always wonder about copyright/legal issues in digital media, especially YouTube videos and consent or lack thereof of the subjects being filmed.
    I appreciate you still sharing your beautiful photos and recipes. I love oats and will definitely be trying this granola recipe.

    1. Yeah, all digital is covered under the legislation, which is American but followed in other countries too. The buck stops with Google though. Get them onside and it is a whole lot easier. If this happens again I will contact the offender and if it isn’t down and continues, I will go straight to Google and not bother with the hosts, who are pretty useless and ignore you if you aren’t hosted by them as well. I hope it doesn’t happen to you, but you know what to do. 🙂

  8. Waiting to try this! Beautiful photos!

    1. Let me know if you do!

  9. mackmarie says:

    YUM! looks ah-may-zing

  10. Chris Mosler says:

    Oh Kelly well done! That’s super news! I’m so sorry you’ve been through this but I’m so glad that standing up for yourself paid off. Just fab! And a gorgeous granola to boot 🙂 xxx

    1. Thanks. I feel so bad-ass now, ha ha! My daughter is especially proud, which makes me incredibly happy. She had to put up with my muttering into my laptop for awhile 😉 xx

  11. So glad to hear about the website being taken down, that must have been so draining. Delicious granola! I need to make a batch!

    1. Thanks so much Lucy. Testing times but I’m happy now. And yup, it’s pretty good granola. I’m making some for the solicitor who gave me free advice, even though I don’t know her personally. I am surrounded by good people.

  12. Kelly, so terrible for you to have had to go through this ordeal. A couple of weeks ago, I found that almost 90% of my recipes were being scraped and streamed by an app. This app was built on content scraped from 20+ bloggers, thankfully, many of whom I know. I think the Google response is a typical one. They need proof upon proof (URLs, screenshots, etc). But repeated complaints from other bloggers seem to help. The app was eventually pulled down, but they are just going to reappear in another name or on another medium. There is such a lack of ethics in the online world!

    1. Oh, I feel for you Anjana! What a sinking feeling when you find out that is happening. It is a good example of people power not letting these sites just rampage their way through decent, law-abiding blogs and website. I hope that is the end of it for you and your freinds, but I agree that they will just pop up in another guise. But hopefully we are both on some black hat’s “don’t mess with them cos they are fighters” list now! 😉 xx

  13. annjenny says:

    How awful, but well done for sticking to your guns. Stealing other people’s work really is the pits.Hopefully that will be the end of it. I sometimes worry when I look at the stats for my blog and see hundreds of page visits per day from Russia. Thank you for another delicious recipe 🙂

    1. Isn’t it just, Ann Jenny? A total heart-sink every time you think about it or see it in your pingbacks. I would look into the Russian thing and see what that’s about. If it is occasional I know that sometimes happens (I’ve heard about it) and spikes your views, but I’d hate to think anything dubious is going on. Let me know what you find, okay?

      1. annjenny says:

        Hi Kellie Thank you for your reply. I can’t see where the Russian page views are coming from so I am hoping it is something fairly innocuous and I’m not sure why anybody would really want to steal my blog posts anyway !! They are not nearly as original and informative as your posts are. So glad again that it’s all sorted for you 🙂

      2. Don’t say that! All of us legitimate bloggers should be proud of what we do. Those pirates however…

  14. Geez, so sorry to hear you had to deal with this Kellie. I figured something was up when you started adding the comment at the bottom of your posts. How did you learn of this site taking your posts in the first place?

    I’ve never used malt syrup but this looks like a nice change to the usual granola. Love the quinoa in it.

    1. It was kind of cryptic I know, Katie. I wasn’t planning on sharing the tale but it just kind of flowed from my fingertips; against my conscious will almost. I hope it inspires others that have had, or will have something similar, to stick to their guns and get bogus sites removed, making the Internet and food blogs the fun, creative and educational spaces they should be. And cat photos, obvs 😉

  15. Yay! So happy to hear that that awful website is being taken down. So sorry that you’ve had to go through this. Gorgeous recipe by the way!

    1. Thanks Jemma. A trying month or so, but my stubbornness kept me in good stead. This time! Sometimes I am too stubborn for my own good! That’s old age for you 😉

  16. I have never had such a horrible experience, thank goodness your diligence was rewarded! Malt syrup is an ingredients new to me, thank you for the intro. And I hope this week is much better for you!

    1. Hi Deb. Yes, it was horrible but weirdly I learned how tenacious I am. I am really a very placid person, not easily ruffled. But I do have a strong streak of really hating injustice of any kind so I wasn’t going to let this one go. Thankfully it had the ending that I wanted. I just wanted to let people know about it and know that they don’t have to sit back and let it happen.

  17. Gosh what a time you’ve had. So glad that all has been rectified for now. Touch wood I’ve only had some minor issues so far, mostly with stolen photos but even that is horrible.
    I’m intrigued by puffed quinoa – must investigate further.

    1. Stolen anything is horrible – images, articles, identity,…clothes (ahem, my daughter). The puffed quinoa is great. I use them in my cashew cardamom and quinoa cookies as well as other baking. And toasted on a salad with nuts and seeds.

  18. Healthy and Psyched says:

    Oh My Gosh! That’s so awful and worse that you had to go through all that hassle to get the site taken down! I can only imagine how it feels. But awesome granola recipe. I’ve never tried barley flakes but I might look into using them in future 🙂

    1. I love barley flakes, especially toasted like this – quite malty on their own. And thank you. It was rubbish but I thought I should post this cautionary story.

  19. Blimey, that’s an awful series of events, but massively impressed with your extraordinary efforts and end result – incredible! Once its all settled down you must take comfort in the fact that your blog is so good the pirates went to such lengths to copy it and also you must be feeling proud in taking on the unknown/invisible pirate and conquering it. Huge bravo and a story that’s good to share, thank you.
    The recipe looks fantastic, I saw it on your IG and knew straight away I would like to make it. Thank you!

  20. Matt Inwood says:

    Good for you, Kellie. And shame on them. Beautiful words and pictures here.

  21. Good for you for sticking with it and making a fuss, and quite rightly so! Let’s hope that’s the end of it for you xx

  22. Well done for sticking to your guns! I had someone clone my Twitter account once and apart from being totally bizarre, it was horrible to see my images and bio being used elsewhere. Beautiful photos, the recipe looks really simple and tasty!

  23. superfitbabe says:

    That’s terrible Kellie! I hate it when others find a way to steal your work–anything that had a lot of time and effort put into it! I’m so glad you handled it the way you did. Thank goodness the site is down! Anyways, I love this delicious granola recipe–it has all of my favorite ingredients!

  24. stateeats says:

    Kellie – YOU GO GIRL. I am so glad this is resolved. But question for you, how does one know if one’s content is getting stolen?? – Kat

    1. I leave an internal link to myself on every post as this will be sure to pingback to me if someone republishes or links to me. Links and mentions are of course fine, but stealing is another thing…

  25. Well done you! I had a similar problem with a US site and did end up sending a C&D letter to the site host together with reporting all the Facebook ads associated with the site as inappropriate due to the illegal use of my material. It seemed to do the trick but, like you, I found it super stressful to sort out. So glad to hear you had a positive outcome though! 😊

    1. I so glad you sorted out your own pirates. Quite satisfying! Thanks for letting us know your story. 🙂

  26. I never saw this post Kellie, so very glad that you got that nasty site taken down, no -one deserves the stress they put you through! Love your granola which is on my list of things to try for myself!

  27. Just a note to tell you how much I love this recipe. I have been making it regularly since you first posted – I think my fifth batch is in the oven now. Uncooked oats – if they have not been soaked overnight – give me stomach pain nowadays, but granola is absolutely fine. And so good with fresh fruit and almond milk 🙂
    Thanks very much !!!
    PS : I use hazelnuts or almonds instead of pecans which I cannot seem to find in Germany. This time I added a few soy flakes and hemp seeds in with it all, too.

    1. Thanks so much for your fantastic feedback. It’s truly our favourite granola and I’m so glad you love it too 😊

  28. Julie says:

    Dear Kelly,
    I made this yet again today, but with a small change. Instead of Quinoa puffs I used locally grown puffed millet. It works well and I am trying not to buy the “super foods” Chia seeds, Quinoa and Goji berries. Millet, Linseeds and blueberries are just as good, I think.
    Normally I like to use hazelnuts instead of pecans and today. The Gronola is so yummy that I made an extra big batch so I could give a kilner jar to my friend on Tuesday when she turns 50. She ate the last jar I gave her within 48 hours 😉
    Thanks so much for your recipes and the wonderful photography:-)

If you have time, I would love to hear from you. Thanks so much!

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