One question I am frequently asked is what is one of my favorite treats to eat. As with any woman, the answer to this question truly does depend on the day. Sometimes, it’s a chocolate chunk cookie. Other days, it’s the cranberry orange biscotti. And then, there are always ‘those’ days when nothing but a Diet Coke will do.
However, one staple I will never ever be able to resist is granola.
Yes. Simple, plain ol’ granola.
I was just about to
say type that I’m not that picky in terms of my favorite kind of granola, but then I would be lying. Truth be told, I may be known to some people to be slightly neurotic when it comes to granola.
More than anything, I love chunks. Loose grains just don’t do it for me. I’m all about digging for the clusters.
I like granola that is sweetened with maple syrup. Honey-sweetened granola is ok in a pinch, but it can often be too sweet for me.
I am a purist: While I admire some granola recipes for their robust approach to breakfast (crystallized ginger, dried cherries, chocolate chips, tons of nuts & seeds, etc,) I always prefer plain to fancy/exotic.
Finally, hands down, homemade granola will always win over purchased granola, as long as it has clusters.
I have tried many different recipes for granola, and have finally found ‘the one’, which I am about to share with you. The original recipe is from Joanne Chang’s cookbook, Flour. I have modified it to suit my taste buds, but the original recipes looks yummy too. So, if you’re curious, I highly recommend checking out the original recipe as well as the rest of her cookbook…it’s one of my favorites.
2 1/2 cups old fashioned whole rolled oats
1 1/2 cups toasted wheat germ
2 tsp cinnamonn
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup – 3/4 cup maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Place a piece of parchment on baking sheet – set aside
3. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix until thoroughly combined.
4. Pour everything onto the sheetpan lined with parchment, and spread mixture to make an even layer.
5. Place baking sheet in oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then pull tray out of oven and stir oats with a spoon or spatula. Return tray to oven and bake for 10-15 more minutes, stirring oats once more.
6. When the oats are golden brown, remove tray from oven and let cool.
7. Finally (the best part) – break granola into LARGE CHUNKS and store in an airtight container.
So…now you know my favorite treat. What’s yours? Anyone else out there a granola freak like me?