Warm, spice-infused fruits and grains wafting through your home will transport all there to a heavenly bed and breakfast. :) I admit it's hard for me to pay 7 bucks for a puny, cold (albeit tasty) bag of granola in the store knowing it's so easy to make my own scrumptious version in minutes flat, and a LOT of it for cheap (you can buy organic grains and dried fruit in the bulk section of the health food store for pennies).
What I like about this particular recipe is that it's changeable--you can mix and match the ingredients depending on what's on hand. It lasts for weeks in an airtight container so it's on-hand and ready to enjoy.
Mix and Match Granola
4 cups rolled oats, wheat, or barley (any combination)
½ cup sunflower or sesame seeds
½ cup honey, maple syrup, or a thick syrup made with ½ cup brown sugar and 2-3 tablespoons water
¼ cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla and/or other extract
¾ cup raisins or other dried fruit (optional)
½ cup nuts (optional)
½ teaspoon salt
(other possible ingredient ideas: flax seeds, coconut flakes, figs, dates, pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, and on and on and on...:))
1. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together except for the dried fruit. Set the dried fruit aside.
2. In another bowl mix the sweetener, oil and extract together.
3. Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. The liquids will be absorbed and the granola will become darker and shinier.
4. Spread the granola in a shallow baking pan. Bake at 325°F for 25 to 35 minutes or until fairly dry and starting to brown. Stir every ten minutes while it is baking to keep the granola on the bottom from burning.
5. Remove the granola from the oven and stir in the fruit.
1. Granola will become crispier and crunchier as it cools. Let it sit a bit before removing from pan--that way the grains will cool into nice clumps. :) Cool completely before storing in an air-tight container.
2. If storing at room temp, use within a couple of weeks. It will last for six months or longer in the freezer.