Granola

7 Apr

This is the second of the flurry of posts that will be coming about due to Easter weekend cooking at the Vose house. This recipe is not a Vose recipe, but one that I wanted to make this weekend nonetheless. It’s excellent with yogurt – normal or frozen. You can also add whatever variety of ingredients you’d like.

I came across this recipe from a coworker of mine passing it along. I was in search of the perfect granola recipe and wasn’t having a ton of luck in my internet searches. Although hard to believe from some of my more caloric recipes previously posted, I do like to make healthier things to have on hand in my kitchen. Granola was something I wanted to be a healthy snack or dessert and many recipes are actually much higher in sugar and carbs than needed.

NOT saying this is the healthiest recipe on the planet, but it’s not terrible for you. Take it or leave it – but I think it’s very tasty. Course I only post things on here I think are tasty so perhaps I’m slightly biased. Oh well.

This recipe is taken from Leite’s Culinaria website with only slight variations from me.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or shreds (this time I didn’t use the coconut as the individuals eating it weren’t huge fans. However, I’ve previously made this and enjoy adding this in. Your choice about your personal views on coconut.)
  • 1 cup whole raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup olive or vegetable oil (I’ve used both and found both to be similarly effective. Use what’s on hand.)
  • 1/4 cup mild honey or light agave nectar (I like honey, though agave nectar may be better for those more health conscious. I should be more of that…oh well.)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped dried fruit (I usually used dried cherries or cranberries. Cranberries was used in this version.)

How to Make:

Essentially all you need to do, is mix everything together. However, there’s a slight method that is suggested.

Preheat the oven to 300°F. I’m the master of forgetting to preheat and then have to sit around wait for the oven to heat up. Don’t be like me.

Grab yourself a nice large bowl and mix your oats, coconut, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. I know my brown sugar usually gets a little chunky so try to break those up as best you can.

Next in a separate microwavable safe bowl, microwave the oil and honey for 20 seconds. Pour the heated mixture into the dry ingredient mixture and make sure everything is thoroughly coated. Add in the vanilla too and stir it in.

Once everything is all mixed up, pour it into a 9×13 baking pan and spread it out evenly (you want everything to bake evenly don’t you!?). Nicely done sous chef, nicely done.

I put the timer on for 25 minutes, but the original recipe says 25 – 40 minutes total. You want to bake it until the top turns golden brown. Also, pull out the pan about 2-3 times during the baking process to stir it around. You want all the granola to be baked well – not just the top. Below is the half-way point.

Your kitchen smells pretty dang good at this point. Serious.

Once you have a golden brown mixture, pull it out and mix in your dried fruit. Then it’s suggested that you push the granola to one side so that it cools in nice little clumps. If you’re into clumps then yes, follow this method. If you prefer clumpless (not a word, but it felt like it should be used here) granola, then spread it out evenly to cool.

Throw it into yogurt, ice cream, oatmeal or whatever other fun item you’d like!

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