Whats sweet, crunchy, and makes a perfect snack?

GRANOLA!

Sorry if I startled you, but I like granola. My girlfriend likes it too, which is why I decided to show her how to make her own instead of buying the bars.

Granola is very easy to make because the ingredients are cheap, the process is fast, and the steps are really, REALLY simple.

We made two granola recipes last night. One is more of a cereal consistency while the other is stickier and suitable for bar shaping. Both involve two main steps: mix wet ingredients and mix dry ingredients into it. I know right? Who could screw this up?

sauce

On the left is the syrup for granola #1 (Cherry Almond Granola) and on the right is syrup #2 (Honey, nut, and granberry granola). Notice the difference in color. #2 has more brown sugar, honey, and butter, so it has a darker color and a more caramel-like flavor.

dry 1

Heres #1 with the dry ingredients about to be mixed.

the pour

Aaah, yes the marriage between the glue and the materials.

1 mixed
here’s #1 mixed and ready for the pan…
2 ready

and here’s #2.

Again, notice the color and the fact that #1 is drier in the sense that #2 looks like oatmeal. It’s very sticky. You can always reduce the syrup to make it more like #1 also. Did I lose you yet with the #1 and #2? Hope not.

sheet

Spread it evenly onto a sheet pan so all of the granola can brown and roast evenly.

Then we have our finished products…..

2 done

1 done

mmmmmm.  Now you have a nice breakfast cereal or an afternoon ziploc savior ready for the 3:00 PM food-blues.

For the cherry almond mix, I used the sliced roasted almonds you can find at the store for salad toppings. I love that stuff in granola. Along with wheat germ, feel free to add flax sprouts or another grain. You can decrease the amount of oats to make it more syrupy.

Cherry Almond Granola

1 stick butter, melted
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup honey
1 1/2 t salt
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup coconut flakes, sweetened (or not if you like)
1/2 cup unsalted slivered almonds
1 1/2 cups dried cherries, chopped
1/2 t ground cinnamon
6 cups old-fashioned oats

In a large bowl, mix butter, brown sugar, honey, and salt. Add oats, coconut, wheat germ, almonds, and cherries. Mix well and make sure all the oats are coated well. Spread into two sprayed full-sized sheet pans and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.

Remove from the oven and carefully loosen the granola. This is when you decide if you want bars, clusters, or everything loose. Once cool (about an hour), store in airtight containers.

For the honey nut cranberry mix, the method is very similar. It uses less oats, and therefore produces less granola, but you can alter that. be sure to add the cranberries after the mix is cooled, otherwise you’ll have tough, super-dry berries in your granola.

Honey, Nut, and Cranberry Granola

2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
2 cups sliced almonds
2 cups sweetened coconut flakes (or unsweetened)
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) melted butter
2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
2/3 cup honey
1 T vanilla extract
2 t ground cinnamon
2 cups dried cranberries

Mix oats, almonds, and coconut in a large mixing bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk butter, sugar, honey, vanilla, and cinnamon until smooth and syrupy. Pour into the oat mixture and stir until well incorporated.

Spread evenly onto 2 sprayed sheet pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. The mixture will toast and become golden brown. Cool in pans on wire rack for an hour, while stirring to prevent all of it sticking.

After cooled, stir in the cranberries. Store in an airtight container and enjoy.

Now go on and make some granola. You know you want it.

Advertisements

One Response

  1. Awh…..thanks babe for making me granola!!!!!!! It was soooooooooooo good baby!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now I am officially spoiled for only wanting your granola!!!!!!!!!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: