Your Favorite Granola

This is a powerhouse granola. The recipe's conception came by way of fostering a love-hate relationship with Oatmeal. I've long pined for the warmth of a steaming bowl of healthy grains, fruits, seeds, and nuts. Yet, the second I raise the dripping gruel to my mouth - UGH - nothing but dull slime. Bring me some sweet crunch! Today, this granola finds its way into my oatmeal, yogurt, even smoothies. And I'd be lying if I said no one's ever caught my hand in the granola jar stealing a snack.

The only rule in this recipe is for every 6 cups of dry ingredients, you need 1 cup of wet ingredients. A return to simple requires flexibility. This granola should always lead you to the ingredients you have on hand. So, get creative and make it your own. I include many suggestions for different seeds, nuts, and grains, but this is your granola. Feel free to combine the different varieties or delete them all together. If you do decide to delete one of the ingredients, simply substitute one of the other options. Just remember the ratio of dry to wet ingredients, and you can't go wrong. For example, don't like ginger? Add more cinnamon. Don't have manuka honey? Substitute more maple syrup to make up the difference.

And always: smile at your attempts, enjoy your accomplishments, and share your knowledge!

Preheat Oven to 350.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine:

3 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup of coarsely chopped nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, cashews, etc, or go with my favorite - a mixture of all)

3/4 cups seeds (sunflower, pumpkin seeds, flax, chia, or again go for it, and mix in some of all)

1/4 cup of bulgur wheat, quinoa, millet, or buckwheat (get creative )

1 tablespoon of lavender flowers

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon of salt

In a small-sized mixing bowl, combine:

1/4 cup of maple syrup

1/4 cup of manuka honey

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

1 tsp vanilla extract

Combine your wet ingredients into your dry, evenly coating all of the ingredients. Spread evenly on a prepared, large cookie sheet pan. I use a non-stick baking sheet on top of my pan to prevent sticking, but you could use parchment or cooking spray. Put pan into oven and bake for 10 minutes at 350.

Take pan out of oven and incorporate:

1/2 cup of coconut flakes (if you don't like coconut, you can simply continue cooking until done)

Place back in oven and bake for another 5 - 10 minutes until browned to your likeness. Remove from oven and incorporate:

1/2 cup of dried fruit (Choose from raisins, cranberries, cherries...)

Endless Possibilities - Endless Uses - Endless Fun!

#grains #vegetarian #food