|Background image via Mary H.|
Growing up, I always had to sneak to my friends house for what I perceived to be "the good stuff". The good stuff consisting of sugary snacks, unnaturally colorful cereal, cookies, etc. I wasn't allowed to have these things growing up and if I did, trust me it wasn't the good stuff. It was the organic, no growth hormone, healthy stuff that I am so thankful for today as a fabulous adult. When my grandmother made this granola recipe though, I stayed put, in the house, waiting for it to cool down. Granola is very tricky.. either its fresh, flavorful and amazing... or its dry, tooth shatteringly hard, and bland.
This recipe, although a little pricey to purchase all of the ingredients, its delicious. I usually just eat it by itself through out the day. It never makes it to yogurt or with milk. Also, it yields a considerable amount, so you will have enough to last you for a few days. If your like me... it wont.
2 1/2 lb. rolled oats
1/2 lb. honey
1/2 c. dried fruit ( raisins, currents, chopped dates, or your fruit of choice )
1/4 c. chopped nuts (almonds, cashews, walnuts, or pecans)
1/8 c. seeds (sesame, sunflower, or pumpkin, optional)
1/4 c. dried coconut (optional)
1 c. safflower oil
1 T. sea salt
1 T. vanilla extract
In two separate bowls, mix all dry ingredients in one and all wet ingredients in the other. In a larger bowl, mix all ingredients together thoroughly but gently, making sure not to over mix. If over mixed, oats will become break into smaller pieces and become crumbly.
Spread the mixture over a large baking sheet and place in a 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until granola is light brown all over. During the course of baking stir granola about 3 times, once after 10 minutes, again 5 minutes later, and once more before it is finished.
Once baked, allow granola to cool, and place in a air tight container.
***If raisins begin to swell while baking, remove them immediately. The oven maybe too hot and the raisins will become hard and inedible