28 June 2012

can't leave well enough alone...

{image credit: Majilee}
Not when I can find better.

Today's is the third granola recipe I have posted, and I shall label it the best. It has no grains, but instead gathers a bounty of nuts and seeds-- with their valuable protein and good fats-- into crunchy clusters that pair perfectly with Greek yogurt (our preference) or milk (for the cereal traditionalist). Mmm.

You can switch up the ingredients depending on preference or availability; granola lends itself to experimentation. I've made a delicious hazelnut variation before, and may add some flax seeds or cardamom next time. And I just realized that tossing cocoa powder in with that hazelnut incarnation would yield . . . Nutella granola. I'm brilliant.

Again, wish I had a camera. The pumpkin seeds are especially pretty.

Obviously this is higher in both cost and calories than an oat-based granola; adjust your serving sizes accordingly. I would stir about 1/3 cup into a bowl of yogurt, top it with berries or sliced banana, and call it breakfast. Bon appetit. Never stop experimenting.

(a modified version of this recipe at Heartland Renaissance)

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups whole almonds
2 cups whole walnuts
1 1/2 cups shredded dried coconut
1 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves

1) Preheat oven to 300. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper (I like to use my stoneware jelly roll pan since the raised sides prevent granola from slipping onto the bottom of the oven).
2) Heat butter, honey, and vanilla in small heavy saucepan until butter is melted. Whisk and remove from heat.
3) Pulse almonds and walnuts in blender or food processor until you have a mixture of fine meal and coarsely chopped nuts. (The meal helps to form nice big chunks of granola, and the coarser pieces add texture.)
4) Stir together chopped nuts and remaining dry ingredients in large mixing bowl. Pour in liquid ingredients and stir to coat.
5) Spread onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, stir carefully, and bake for 20-25 more minutes until golden. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack. (At this point you may be thinking, Hey... where are the promised clusters? Just you wait, Henry Higgins. It will clump up as it cools, so long as you don't mess with it.)
6) Once granola is completely cool, store in airtight container. I usually freeze most of it and keep about 3 cups in a Mason jar in the cupboard.

Shared on Simple Lives Thursday.

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