Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Crunchy Granola

This granola recipe is a favorite of mine, and my Summerhill students always seem to enjoy it when they're here, so I thought I'd pass it along. Since granola tends to be high-calorie, I usually use it as a condiment and sprinkle it on top of fresh fruit and yogurt for a delicious breakfast.This morning I had fresh red raspberries and strawberries from our garden. Sublime!

Crunchy Granola

3 cups uncooked oats (old-fashioned, not quick)
1/3 cup wheat germ
1/3 cup sunflower seed kernels
1/3 cup chopped almonds
1/3 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup roughly chopped dried fruit

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, almonds, pecans, sesame seeds and cinnamon in a large bowl.
2. Melt butter and brown sugar over medium heat, stirring constantly. Stir in maple syrup or honey. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla.
3. Pour sugar mixture over oat mixture and stir to combine. Spread evenly on a greased baking pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, stirring 3 times during baking. Cool. Stir in dried fruit.

Recipe notes: This recipe is very flexible. I sometimes add more oats, and since I can't eat gluten, I use gluten-free oats and substitute gluten-free cereal for the wheat germ. I sometimes use slivered almonds instead of chopped, and I always break the pecans into pieces instead of chopping them, because I like having larger pieces. For the dried fruit, I use raisins, dates, and/or dried cherries.

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