Inspired by a write-up in a recent issue of Cook’s Illustrated, I decided to make granola today. The recipe I used didn’t differ much from recipes I’ve used in the past, but a key technique — tamping down the raw granola and not stirring during cooking — resulted in a much chunkier texture.
- 5 cups rolled oats (raw)
- 2 cups chopped raw nuts
- 2/3 cup sweetener
- 1/2 cup fat
- 2 cups dried fruit
- any other adjuncts you desire
For the sweetener, I used a mixture of equal parts maple syrup and turbinado sugar. I imagine that any combination of sugar based syrups and sugars would work as long as there is enough moisture to hold the oats together. I used olive oil for the fat. For spices, I just used salt (1/2 tsp) and cinnamon (1 tsp). I used raisins for the dried fruit. If you are using roasted instead of raw nuts, include these with the adjuncts rather than the nuts.
- Preheat oven to 325˚. Mix the sweetener, fat and spices thoroughly in a large bowl. Stir in oats and nuts, and mix until evenly coated.
- Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the mixture onto the sheet. Tamp the mixture down until it evenly coats the sheet.
- Bake for around 45 minutes until golden brown, rotating the baking sheet once. Do not mix! Remove from oven and allow the granola to cool completely before handling.
- Break the granola into the desire size of pieces. Add the dried fruit and any other adjuncts you might want — I added some shredded coconut.
This definitely was the best result I’ve had making my own granola. It is still a bit on the sweet side for my taste, but it seems that lowering the sugar content might also result in a less crunchy concoction. I’ll have to experiment next time. I’m excited to have the granola over yogurt for breakfast tomorrow!