Homemade Granola

Almost every morning I eat yogurt mixed with fruit and granola.  I love the sweet crunch that granola provides but I've had a tough time finding a super tasty granola that isn't a calorie bomb.  Until now.  While flipping through this month's Everyday Food, I saw an easy, versatile granola recipe that I had to try.  As an aside, one of my New Year's resolutions was to limit my intake of processed foods, and while I'm doing better, I'm not quite there (I need an ice cream maker!) but this recipe is a step in the right direction.

Cast of Characters:
- 3 cups of rolled oats (not the quick-cooking kind)
- 1 cup of unsalted nuts
- 1/4 cup of unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1/2 cup of honey
- 1 tsp of cardamom
- 1/2 tsp coarse salt
- 1 cup of dried fruit, diced

The original recipe calls for unsalted, shelled pistachios and while I LOVE pistachios I could not find them at the grocery store so I went with walnuts instead.  I used dried apricots and TJ's orange flavored cranberries (delicious FYI) for my fruits.

1) Preheat your over to 300 degrees.
2) Combine oats and chopped nuts in a large bowl.
3) In a small saucepan combine butter, honey, cardamom and salt.  Stir occasionally until butter melts.
4) Pour butter mixture over the oats and nut mixture, coat evenly.

5) Spread mixture evenly over a parchment lined baking sheet (I used a silpat mat instead) and bake for 30 - 35 minutes until the oats are golden brown.  Stir every ten minutes so your oats toast evenly.

6) Let granola cool completely (20 minutes or so) and then add the fruit in.

This granola is soooo tasty!  Store bought granola is a thing of the past now that I have this in my arsenal.  Besides being easy, the depth of flavor and the toasted texture are exactly what I have been searching for in my granola.  I can see variations with almonds, cashews, pecans, raisins, dried cherries, blueberries, the possibilities are endless! For those calorically minded, the version above works out to approximately 115 calories, 5 grams of fat and 3 grams of protein for a 1/4 cup.  No more morning calorie bombs.

Happy crunching!


SquirrelGurl said...

Can't wait to try it out!

Ryan said...

Looks good! You definitely need to invest in the ice cream maker too!

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