Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘granola’

Well, I probably exaggerate but it sure is good.  I have been making a Vanilla Almond Granola from Sally’s Baking Addiction for a while.  It is fantastic!  Recently I discovered her recipe for Maple Pecan Pie Granola.  It too is fantastic!  I love the crunchiness of the second – and the pecans, of course – but it was quite a bit sweeter than I really want for every day.  So I made a sort of mash between the two recipes, and it’s now my favorite.

Serve 1/4 to 1/3 cup of this delicious granola on top of plain yogurt, with fruit or by itself.

2-1/2 to 3 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup of packed brown sugar (dark, light, your preference)
1 to 1-1/4 cups of chopped pecans
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice (optional)
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
1-1/2 tablespoons of vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line an 18×13 inch sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat.  I find the silicone mat makes life easier because it stays in place better when you stir the granola during the baking process.

In a large bowl, stir together the oats, brown sugar, chopped pecans, cinnamon/pumpkin spice, and salt.  I use three cups of oats, but if you like it a little clumpier, use the smaller amount.  This isn’t going to make a very clumpy granola even with the lesser amount of oats.

In the microwave heat the 1/2 cup of maple syrup in a one-cup glass measure  for one minute.  Add the 1/4 cup of coconut oil and give it a good stir.  If the coconut oil is still partially solid after a good stir, stick it in the microwave for 15 or 30 seconds, and then give it another good stir until it’s well mixed.  Stir the vanilla extract (I recommend Trader Joe’s Pure Bourbon Vanilla Extract – it contains no corn syrup!) into the syrup/oil.

Pour the syrup/oil/extract mixture into the dry ingredients, tossing till all of the dry ingredients are coated.

Spread the mixture onto the prepared sheet pan, then bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.   You don’t want to overcook it, because the nuts will over toast and the oats will get too brown.  If I’m not right on the timer at the first two 15-minute intervals (sometimes I’m feeding the dog, and we can’t make the dog wait!), I’ll pull the granola out of the oven before the last 15 minutes have expired.  You don’t want to overcook the pecans or let the oats get too dark.  When you pull it out of the oven for the final time, it will continue to cook a bit because of the retained heat.  Let it cool in the pan.  Store in an airtight container.  I have some for breakfast every day when I make it, so I know from experience it can be stored for at least two weeks.  I doubt this will be in your cupboard longer than that.

How many calories does this have?  I have no idea.  I do know that, with yogurt, it is a delicious breakfast that satisfies my stomach until lunch time.   Enjoy!

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

The very idea of granola always turned me off.  The word conjured visions of unwashed people eating wood shavings. And then I discovered home-made granola.  O.M.G.  It is incredible.  And really easy to make.  Adding to the basic joy is that you can adapt the recipe to suit your personal likes.  Breakfast (and snack time) has never been so delicious.  I basically doubled the recipe I adapted, so this should be split and cooked on two 13×18 sheet pans so it toasts properly.
IMG_20150503_083139

Here we go:

5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1-1/2 cups slivered almonds

1 cup sweetened or unsweetened shredded coconut

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup pure maple syrup

1/2 cup melted coconut oil (or butter)

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract

1 to 1-1/2 cups dried fruit (I like dried cherries but chop them to get better distribution)

* * * * * * * *

Preheat oven to 300F degrees.

Toss the oats, almonds, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl.

I like to cut down on the number of dishes to wash by using the same 4-cup measuring cup used to measure the oats to measure and combine the coconut oil and maple syrup. If you have never used coconut oil, you might think it would impart a strong flavor.  It does not.  It is solid when cold, like slush at 75F degrees, and liquid at 90F degrees.  You can use butter or your preferred oil instead but I really like the coconut oil.

Since the coconut oil will go chunky when you add cold maple syrup (or depending on the temperature of your house it may be solid in the jar), you’ll want to stick the syrup/oil mixture into the microwave for 30 seconds (possibly twice or three times) so it can be whisked to combine.  Stir in the almond and vanilla extracts, then pour the whole thing over the oats mixture, tossing to thoroughly coat the dry ingredients, and then spread evenly, all the way to the edges, onto two 13×18 half-sheet pans lined with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

Bake for 15 minutes, stir the granola around, bake for another 15 minutes, stir again, then bake for another 15 minutes, for a total cooking time of 45 minutes.

After it has cooled on the counter (about half an hour), mix in 1-1/2 cups of whatever combination of dried fruits strikes your fancy.  I really like candied ginger but because it is so strong, I wouldn’t recommend using more than 1/2 cup. Chopped dried cherries are my current favorite.

Store in an airtight container for up to three weeks, although I doubt you’ll have any around that long.

Read Full Post »