Friday, March 28, 2014

Gorgeous Granola. Easier than ever

I have found the perfect granola recipe. It has taken me some years but finally I have a harmoniously orchestrated nutty jar of sweet sweets, but not too sweet. I have played with quite a few recipes and tinkered with more. And every time I do, something seems wrong: it ends up too sticky; majorly clumpy or just not quite what I have in my mind's eye. It has been very frustrating. Finally, however, I have really got somewhere. And it turns out it is pretty simple with this clear and easy formula in mind. Testament to following a good recipe properly, this has worked every time I have baked it. Just stick to the rules. And an added bonus, this literally takes 35 minutes to make so you don't even need to forward plan your perfect health fiesta brunch. Go wild, make a last minute decision. 

Given that this is a blueprint recipe, you can play around with the different elements, depending on what is good value in the shops or what you have to hand at home. Just so long as you stick to the correct amounts of wet and dry goods. At Rosie's, we have done a few different batches: those with shredded coconut for a hot and tropical scent or another with loads of decadent flaked almonds for a luxe version. 

This recipe is such a hit I have instantly added it to our menu at the cafe, served with fruit from the market and freshest sharp natural yogurt. It really is delicious. As the original recipe came from an American website, I've done it in cups for continuity. 

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sweetener, either honey or maple syrup
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
4 cups oats, a mix of course and rolled works well for a varied texture
2 cups any mix of nuts and seeds. I have used coconut, sunflower, sesame and almonds
a pinch of salt 

Preheat your oven to 180c and line 3 baking trays with grease proof paper. Warm together the oil, sweetener and cinnamon until is it gently boiling and combined. This can either be done in a microwave or a small pan depending on what is easier for you. Meanwhile in a large bowl mix together the oats, nuts and salt. Using a good spatula, quickly work in the wet ingredients to the dry ones. Be sure that it is well mixed and consistently blended. Turn the mix out onto the baking trays and spread evenly. Place in the oven for 30 minutes, tossing and mixing every ten minutes until your granola is golden and toasted. Be careful not to stray too far from the oven as it can burn easily and quicker than you think. Remove from the oven and leave to cool entirely. Jar up when cold or tuck in immediately depending on your urgency.