Time to Bake the Granola!

7 Aug

Same stuff, different URL!

I have moved to: harvette.com

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I’ve only made homemade granola once before today, last summer during one of my “gluten free” stints: it turned out OK but I promptly turned it into granola bars that were not very tasty. They tasted very “healthy” and not in a good way. I brought them to a party, no one really ate them (except for the “pity tries”) and I wasn’t very surprised. Those got mostly tossed.

I eat granola on a daily basis – at least one meal each day consists of greek yogurt, granola, raw nuts, a bit of honey or a bit of raspberry jam. This has been one of my favorite meals for years and it’s very often my lunch at work. I normally shell out the big bucks for small containers of healthy granolas that are high on nutrients and low on sugar and other uneeded crap.

So, with my granola recipe I was looking for something versatile that I could add nuts or dried fruit to – this time I’m using pecans and dried cranberries, my current favorite combo (another recent favorite is almonds and dried apricots). I read through a number of recipes before deciding to just make up my own recipe this morning – it turned out great, so I’ll share it with you! And just in case you were wondering, Ruby waited on the back deck while I cooked in the kitchen.

Granola

Yields about 6 1/2 cups, fit into a 7 cup container perfectly

NOTE: Due to the fact that my pecans got a little dark, I think I’ll wait until the last 5-10 minutes of cooking time to mix those in next time.

I used:

  • 5 cups rolled oats (not quick cooking)
  • 1 cup pecan halves broken up into smaller pieces
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons canola or other cooking oil
  • 1 cup dried cranberries

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare a very large cookie sheet or baking tray by spraying it with non-stick spray.

In a small sauce pan mix the liquid and spice ingredients: honey, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, salt, and canola oil. Cook over low heat for about 10 minutes, or until the sugar melts and the mixture just begins to bubble around the edges. It will smell AWESOME. Remove from heat to cool just a bit.

Measure the oats and break up the pecans, mixing them into the oats. Slowly pour the sugar mixture over the oat mixture, stirring with a rubber spatula – though, like me, you may find it easier to just stir with your hands, to ensure everything is evenly coated!

Turn out the entire mixture onto your prepared cookie sheet. My cookie sheet was FULL, so I patted it down and smoothed out the top.

Cook for about 30 minutes (the longer you cook it, the crunchier it will be), stirring it around at least once or twice. You may find it easier to remove the pan from the oven to stir the mixture around – my pan was so full I didn’t want to risk oats all over the bottom of my oven.

Once the mixture is browned to your liking (at 30 minutes the granola was perfectly crunchy for me, but most of the pecans were too browned for my liking), take out and place on a wire rack until completely cool.

Once cool, put into a storage container and mix in the dried cranberries. This should keep indefinitely in the fridge – but I’m going to try keeping it out of the fridge in an attempt to ensure it stays very crunchy.

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5 Responses to “Time to Bake the Granola!”

  1. Jenn V. August 7, 2010 at 11:54 pm #

    This looks great. I’m another greek yogurt/granola fan, so I’ll have to try this out. One of the things I love about the co-op in Northampton is the huge variety of bulk dried nuts & fruits. Currants? Sure! Crushed pecans? Awesome! Currants and almonds sounds very Swedish to me.

    Oh, and a question for you – we do so much cooking/eating from scratch here, and do a pretty good job of it, except that we are cracker FIENDS. From Matt to me to Charlotte, we all love crackers. Have you ever made any crackers? Any recommendations?

    • Harvette August 8, 2010 at 8:32 am #

      more like lingon berries and almond for the sweeds 😉

      oooh crackers! what kind do you guys eat? i have tried making crispy flatbread (though this was a while ago) but never crackers with body (like a ritz-type texture). I personally love flatbread crackers and wouldn’t mind making more, especially given the line of up of soft cheese recipes I have on my ‘to do’ list over the next few months!

  2. Frugal 'n' Fit! August 11, 2010 at 11:54 am #

    Ooh, this sounds awesome! I will have to try this soon.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Back! « Frugal 'n' Fit: The pursuit of wealth and health! - August 15, 2010

    […] I made granola using Heather’s recipe.  I halved the recipe because Husband is not much of a granola-eater and I used walnuts, dates and […]

  2. To Make: recipes « - August 19, 2010

    […] to my normal eating habits – however granola (normally consisting of something similar to the recipe I posted a few weeks ago) is a daily staple for me and I’ve been scouting out some […]

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