Friday, April 23, 2010

Great Go-Anywhere Granola

Preheat oven to 325F.

Mix all of these ingredients together in a very LARGE mixing bowl:

8 cups LARGE flake rolled oats

2 cups sliced almonds

1 cup unsweetened coconut

1 cup roasted unsalted sunflower seeds

1 cup oat bran or red bran flakes

1 ½ tsp cinnamon

½ tsp cloves

½ tsp nutmeg

In a small saucepan mix together:

1 cup brown sugar

2/3 cup liquid honey or maple syrup

Slowly bring to a boil while stirring frequently. When it reaches a light boil (with small bubbles rising to the surface), immediately remove from heat. Pour over oat mixture. Spray grease or lightly grease a large spoon and use it to stir this sticky mixture. Mix thoroughly.

Line a large disposable aluminium-roasting pan with parchment paper or a large sheet of heavy-duty tin foil. If using foil, spray grease the foil. Carefully pour the mixture into the lined-pan and spread it out evenly. Bake mixture in the oven at 325F for 30-40 min. and stir at 10 min intervals. Be sure to stir the mixture thoroughly (at 10 minutes intervals) to break up chunks to prevent burning around the edges. When nicely browned but not burnt remove from the oven and let cool completely. If you wish: Stir in 1 cup of raisins and about 2 cups mixed dried fruit like cranberries, peaches, pears, apricots or figs.

Helpful tips:

1) The large disposable roasting pans sold in the grocery stores are perfect for this recipe. They are lightweight, and can be easily washed and reused.

2) Use parchment paper or large, BBQ size heavy-duty aluminium foil to line the pan. Once the mixture cools, you can use the liners to pour the mixture into containers, see Tip 4.

3) Bake granola in the middle or lower third of the oven but NOT on the bottom rack.

4) To transfer the mixture to containers, carefully lift the edges of the parchment paper and pour the mixture into Ziploc bags or other large containers. The granola can also be stored in the freezer in Ziploc bags.

5) This granola makes a wonderful a healthy breakfast or snack when you are travelling, staying in a hotel or camping. Simply store individual 1/3 c servings in small Ziploc plastic bowls and add milk. At your hotel, buy milk, store in the bar fridge and add to your breakfast granola in the morning.