Happy 2014! Have you recovered from the holidays? I hope your new year is off to a good start. It’s been nice to have a few weeks of normal around here. No travel. No big plans. Just the Honey and the pup. Time for long field walks in the fleeting light of late afternoon. Winter days made warmer with the oven running as I tinker about in the kitchen, playing with old recipes and working on new ones. I’m resolute to make more pantry staples from scratch, and homemade granola is the first subject I’ve tackled. I’ve been baking up big batches of it on the weekend, which keeps us stocked throughout the week for quick and comforting breakfasts on dark and early mornings.
The recipe as written below is for a maple cinnamon-spiced granola, but think of it as a simple granola framework, or general set of guidelines, and feel free to substitute your favorite sweeteners, nuts, and spices. The ratios work pretty well with a number of flavor combinations. I’m partial to this maple cinnamon number atop a big bowl of greek yogurt with banana slices and fresh berries, but it’s also pretty great straight from the jar…
- 5 cups rolled (old-fashioned) oats
- 1-1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp (packed) light brown sugar
- 1-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp fine grain sea salt
- 5 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 tbsp molasses
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- optional: 2 cups dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, cherries, apricots etc.)
- Preheat an oven to 325 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, coconut flakes, and chopped nuts, and stir until well-mixed.
- In a separate mixing bowl, stir together the remaining ingredients except for the dried fruit (if using), until well-combined. Drizzle over the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until the entire mixture is evenly coated. Pour the granola onto the sheet pan, and spread into an even layer. Use the back of a spatula to press the granola down firmly into the pan.
- Bake for 40-50 minutes, until the top is golden brown and slightly toasted. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool on a baking sheet for about an hour. When the granola has cooled, break it into chunks. Stir together with the dried fruit, if using. Store in an airtight container for up to a week. Serve with yogurt and berries or munch on as a snack!