Friday, May 10, 2013

Homemade Granola: Maple Pecan with Raisins

My husband has been on a granola kick lately and - in an effort to save money and control what goes in it - we decided we'd try to make our own. Oats, honey, raisins, nuts...I figured it couldn't be too hard, right? Right! It was easy, inexpensive, and yummy! I brought some to work and have been eating it with yogurt. And, it's delicious with milk, of course! It's also nice because a little goes a long way and is very filling.

It's is also one of those recipes that is completely flexible. Since I hadn't made it before, I wanted a recipe to go from so I wouldn't make any major mistakes, so my recipe below is adapted from the wonderful David Lebovitz. My husband made a different version, adapted from Alton Brown's recipe. My recipe (below) has pecans, raisins, maple syrup, and I tried using Lyle's Golden Syrup instead of honey. At first, when fresh out of the oven, it tasted way too apple-cinnamonny, but the next day that strong apple-cinnamon flavor had dissipated and I liked the flavor a lot more. My husband's recipe has almonds, walnuts, brown sugar, and sunflower seeds. He eliminated the maple syrup and coconut and used walnuts instead of cashews from Alton Brown's recipe. We also both thought that recipe had too much salt.

Homemade Granola: Maple Pecan with Raisins

Preheat oven to 300 degrees and set aside a sheet pan (jelly roll pan, with edges). I also love parchment paper - easy cleanup! - so I also used some parchment paper on the pan.

Mix the following "dry" ingredients (except raisins) in a large bowl:
3 c. old fashioned oats (not quick cooking)
2 c. pecans, roughly chopped
1/3 packed brown sugar
approx. 1/8 c. sunflower seeds, more/less to taste (I only used a bit as I'm not too partial to them)
approx. 3/4 t. ground cinnamon, to taste
approx. 1/4 t. ground ginger, to taste
approx. 1/2 t. salt
1 c. raisins, added during last 10 minutes of baking

Mix wet ingredients in small bowl:
approx. 1/3 c. unsweetened applesauce
approx. 1/3 of 1/3 c. Lyle's Golden Syrup (or honey), see below for screenshot of how much I used
2 T. pure maple syrup
2 T. oil (I used safflower)

Add wet ingredients to dry and mix well with a spatula or large spoon until completely covered. It won't seem like enough liquid but it will eventually coat the dry ingredients.

Spread evenly onto a sheet pan and bake for about 1 hour, stirring well every 10-15 minutes. Add the raisins for the last 10 minutes only or they will burn. The raisins will puff way up and look like re-inflating grapes, but they will re-raisin themselves when they cool.

Bake until the oats have dried out and mixture is no longer moist when you stir. Enjoy on its own as a snack, or with milk or yogurt!

my finished granola with pecans and raisins

my husband's recipe included oats, sliced almonds, chopped walnuts,
sunflower seeds, brown sugar

from the beginning...mix and match whichever flavors you like best

I used about 1/3 of 1/3 of a cup of Lyle's Syrup

wet ingredients mixed together

spread onto my sheet pan, ready to bake

add the raisins for the final 10 minutes of baking

baked, cooled, and ready for snacking

also delicious with milk!

Bye for now...

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