Granola is a whole grain, crunchy treat I like, but rarely eat. The reason: Many granola bars sold in supermarkets are packed with calories, but are not that wholesome. And they seem very expensive considering the stingy size you get … 3 or 4 bites per bar. Hey, are we birds, or humans who like to eat? PLEase! Give us a serving, not a sample. And let's keep ingredients healthy and simple.
So this morning I baked a big sheet of granola. Easy-breezy recipe, and when it cooled, I broke it up, rustic style. Voilà:
3 cups Old Fashioned oats
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped walnuts (or peanuts, or pecans, or sliced almonds)
¼ cup flax seeds
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons honey
¼ cup canola oil (or try peanut oil.)
1½ teaspoons real vanilla extract
¼ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Optional: ½ cup dried raisins or cranberries; a dash of cinnamin
1. On a cookie sheet, combine the oats, coconut, nuts and flax seeds; toast in the oven for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees F.
2. Put the brown sugar, honey and oil in a pot and simmer on the stovetop until it bubbles, about 8 minutes.
3. Turn off the flame and add the vanilla to the liquid mixture.
4. Next, combine the dry into the wet ingredients.
5. Fold in chocolate chips (or dried fruit if you wish).
6. Evenly spread the granola mixture on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. (Or just grease the pan with canola or olive oil.)
7. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown.
8. Allow to cool completely; remove from the cookie sheet, then cut or break it up into pieces. I think the granola tastes better a day old, or more.
Note: After you make granola a few times, try adding ½ cup peanut butter to the mix (step 3). To make bars [as opposed to cereal] add 2 eggs and about 1/3 cup of water (step 4) to get the granola to stick together.