Sunday, July 18, 2010


I can't stand hot oatmeal, one of Eric and Nutmeg's favorite meals (any time of day, nearly any time of year). But I adore granola (which Nutmeg also loves, but Eric oddly does not). My Mom made an awesome granola when I was a kid, but I have not been able to replicate it (I think it had more sugar or oil than I wanted, too). A few years ago, I adapted a recipe from Alton Brown's Good Eats along with my Mom's, that has become a favorite. It's quite adaptable, too. It's a flaky granola, not chunky. (I LOVE chunky granolas--that's what Mom made, and what I love at restaurants/farmer's markets. I don't know what makes it that, but I'm guessing using sugar instead of honey, baking on a cookie sheet, and not stirring. But I prefer honey and molasses to having to cook sugar and honey on the stove.)

  • 3 c oatmeal or other rolled grains
  • 1-2 c chopped nuts (walnuts, cashews, almonds, etc)
  • pinch salt unless nuts or seeds are salted
  • 1/2 c coconut
  • 1/2 c wheat germ
  • 1/4 c sesame, flax, or sunflower seeds
  • 1-2 tsp cinnamon or other spices depending on nuts and dried fruit
Put in 9x13 baking pan and toss with hands to mix well. (This can be done hours in advance.) Pour on top:
  • 1/4 c oil + applesauce OR 3/4 c applesauce (increase time by at least 15 mins)
  • scant 3 Tbs molasses (scant 1/3c for double batch)
  • heavy 3 Tbs honey (1/3 c for double batch)
Mix well using hand. AB says to wear a disposable glove, but I just wash my hand afterward.

250 oven for 1 hour 15 minutes, stirring and shifting oven position every 15 minutes. When cool, add dry fruit to taste.

Walnut orange: 4 Tbs orange peel (although I make my own and its not very strong as I don't take much pith off; YMMV).
Peanut butter: Substitute 1/2 c peanut butter for oil, shorten bake time to 1 hour.
Sun oven: 1 hour with lid on, stir once. I didn't care for the taste as it doesn't dry out as much as in the oven.
Misc: If I don't have nuts, seeds, or coconut, I leave them out. If it's all of the above, I put in more oats to replace the lots bulk. I've used wheat bran instead of wheat germ since I had it once. If you prefer honey or molasses, they are interchangeable; I love molasses but I did not like it when I did more than just under 50% molasses.

Since we eat so much and it stores well in the freezer, I usually make 2-3 batches at once. Either size will fit in 2 9x13 pans or a roasting pan (increase time by 15 mins).

This morning, I forgot the coconut as when I prepped the dry last night, I wanted to grate it fresh. But I didn't leave a reminder out and remember after it had been cooking. I did it with all applesauce, which I've surely done before, but it seemed much moister than usual and I baked it at least 30 minutes extra, maybe an hour. I made orange-walnut, with clementine zest from early spring.

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