Thursday, October 27, 2011
[This post submitted to SortaCrunchy's "Your Green Resource"]
I kinda love the fact that "granola" can mean "sustainable, hippy-ish, dirty, Birkenstock-wearing" or whatever else you want it to mean. I'm kind of all those things (well, I'm definitely Birkenstock-wearing, but all the others more or less), and I also love granola! It's one of those "health" foods that can be surprisingly awful for you. My version is pretty much just oats and nuts, with a handful of dried fruit tossed in for sweetness and good measure. I like to eat it with yogurt, or even a splash of milk. My husband is a breakfast-cereal addict, and this doesn't quite cut it for him. It's a little heavy and chewing-intensive compared to, say, Golden Grahams. But for me, it's breakfast perfection!
3 cups old-fashioned oats (not quick cooking, not instant, not steel-cut)
1/2 cup raw walnuts
1/2 cup raw almonds (whole or sliced)
1/2 cup raw pecans
1/2 cup dried cranberries or cherries or raisins
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
Preheat oven to 250. Take all the nuts and combine them in the food processor. Give the mixture twenty one-second pulses, until the nuts are chunky and similar in size. Combine the chopped nuts, oats, dried fruit, and maple syrup in a large bowl. Mix until everything is well-coated in syrup. Drizzle a little olive oil (maybe a teaspoon - I hate measuring oil because I feel like half of it stays in the measuring spoon - anybody with me on this?) on a large baking sheet, and use a paper towel or clean dishrag to spread it around and make a light film on the sheet. Turn the granola out onto the oiled sheet and use a spatula to pat it out into an even layer. Bake, stirring every ten minutes, until it is nice and crunchy (this will depend on how humid it is, how dry your nuts were, etc). Probably forty minutes is the longest I've ever gone. Let it cool on the sheet and then put into a jar or tupperware. Store in the fridge. Lasts a long time and makes a lot of servings.