Sweet & Salty: A New Granola Favorite
December 28, 2010 § 1 Comment
For the past two weeks, I’ve slept through every sunrise, although I’ve been up late enough to nearly greet it. Every so often, I love puttering around my family’s house, late at night, while the rest of the world sleeps. I wear giant, green slippers and shuffle in and out of the empty rooms with a few soft lamps aglow. I read door-stopper books, watch addicting TV mini-series that take place in the 12th century or eat midnight bowls of minestrone soup. But as with all new habits that go against an old grain, the charm of 3-o’clock mornings is starting to fade. Tomorrow I’ll be breaking the cycle and, because I’ll likely be a zombie, I figured I’d entice myself into the early hours with my favorite breakfast.
For the past four weeks I’ve been tweaking an old, favorite clumpy granola recipe. Instead of aiming for just clumps, I wanted to create a granola with great crunch, too, and lots of texture. I also wanted a bowl of granola that had a hint of salt (tipping my hat to Molly‘s grey sea salt chocolate chip cookies); my first trial was salty-overload, but now I’ve settled upon a half-teaspoon (per batch) and the granola tastes great. Be warned though; this recipe is addictive. I want to give a bit of inspirational credit: For the past couple of years I’ve amassed dozens, if not hundreds of granola recipes, but this November I came across a new granola recipe, by Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini. I’ve been fiddling with her proportions of oats, nuts, coconut flakes and other add-in’s to create my own favorite blend, but I’ve stuck with her basic liquid ratio: six tablespoons of sweetener to two tablespoons oil. Each granola trial, stemming from that basic proportion, has been wonderful; this is my favorite combination of ingredients below:
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup buckwheat groats
1/2 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1/2 cup almonds, chopped
6 tablespoons honey, high quality (this imparts the most flavor)
1 tablespoon pumpkin butter, optional
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
few pinches of favorite spices (cardamom, cinnamon, all spice, cloves, nutmeg, etc.)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Mix dry oats, groats, coconut, seeds and nuts in a bowl and set a side.
3. In a small sauce pan, heat honey, pumpkin butter and olive oil until liquidy. Add spice and salt and stir until incorporated. Remove from heat and add vanilla.
4. Pour onto dry ingredients and stir until thoroughly coated.
5. Layer on a sheet pan and bake for 30-40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Let cool for 2 hours, out of the oven or in the warm oven (once turned off) with the door ajar. Break apart and store in an air-tight container.
Diet Notes: gluten-free