Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Hearty Daily Granola

I honestly can't believe it's taken me this long to post one of my staple foods in the house:  granola!  I know, I know, being the "Earth People" that we are (term coined by my mother-in-law), it comes as no surprise that we eat granola every single morning with our breakfast.  And sometimes for a snack!

This winning recipe is the best because it's easy, fast and makes a large volume.  I've adapted it from a Bed & Breakfast on the San Juan Islands (off the coast of Washington State).  I haven't purposely omitted their name, I just forget!  If anyone knows the name of the B & B, please remind me and I'll give them credit!!  It's a gorgeous and rare escape only a quick ferry ride from Seattle.  In 2008, my wonderful friends Tessa and Dave were married there and part of her wedding favor for guests was this very granola!  She gave me the recipe because I loved it so much and we've been making it religiously ever since.

Hangry Foodasaurus, 2012

Here's what you need:

o   7 cups oats  (regular or steel cut or a mixture)
o   ½ cup brown sugar (you can always use a little less)
o   ½ cup olive oil (I used ¼ cup EVOO and ¼ cup coconut oil)
o   ½ tsp sea salt
Hangry Foodasaurus, 2012
o   ½ cup each of:
o   almonds
o   pecans (I omitted pecans, doubled up on other seeds/nuts)
o   walnuts
o   cashews
o   pepitas
o   sesame seeds (I omitted)
o   flax meal (I used whole flax seeds or sometimes omit altogether)
o   millet
o   oat bran
o   coconut
o   sunflower seeds
-¾ cup honey  (you can substitute maple syrup or a blend of both)
-1 T vanilla extract (I sometimes use almond extract)
-2 tsp cinnamon

You can also spruce it up by adding your favorite dried fruits or other grains!!  I tend to get the raw, unsalted and preferably organic versions of all the nuts and seeds.  Roasted nuts work too, but stick with the unsalted.

Mix everything together in a very large bowl.  Leave some clumps remaining.  Spread onto 2 large-sized flat baking sheets with sides.  Bake at 300 degrees F for 30 minutes.  I always put the racks towards the center and switch places with the two sheets on the shelves halfway through—stir at this point.  Allow to cool on baking sheets (it will continue to cook), stirring frequently until completely cooled.  Store in airtight containers in the fridge.  

Tip:  Once refrigerated it is trickier to break apart, so I always leave out the container that we're currently using and rotate through the refrigerated ones.  

Even though there's a ton, it goes quickly around our house, so I like to stock up for at least 2 batches worth when I go to the grocery store.  My favorite thing to do is top Greek yogurt with this granola and berries, mangoes or other fruit.  Also, amazing on its own with unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or your milk of choice).

Happy Crunching!

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