Homemade granola has always been one of those things I’m going to make. It’s been on my ‘To Do’ list for years. Literally. Admittedly it’s a very long list and there are plenty of things on it that should really be reclassified and put onto an ‘In an Ideal World’ list. I would probably include Being a Better Mother, watching the Complete Series of Breaking Bad and implementing a Home Filing System superior to piling heaps of papers onto various surfaces.
Until recently I had never actually managed to get around to making my own granola. Because, I think, it always seemed like a long list of ingredients and a lot of preparation for something that, despite my best intentions, I probably wouldn’t really like very much and that would sit in a cupboard until it went off, like most store-bought granola has recently. It’s never quite what I’m looking for. Too sweet / not enough dried fruit / too clumpy, etc. However to make it yourself you just need to find a basic recipe you like and adapt it to your tastes. It may take a while to assemble all the ingredients but you can make a large batch to last a few weeks. This recipe is based on one my nutritionist friend Magda uses: it’s nutrient-rich, contains healthy fats and natural sweeteners and has a lower GL than a lot of granolas. I have adapted it to my tastes (and sometimes my store cupboard as I’m on my fourth batch now) and that’s very easy to do: just replace like for like (nuts for nuts, seeds for seeds, agave nectar for maple syrup, etc) but make sure the oats you use are rolled oats rather than porridge oats (you can also make it gluten-free by using gluten-free oats).
But enough of that, what’s next on that list?
250g rolled oats
60g almonds, flaked or whole ones roughly chopped
60g pecans, roughly chopped
60g walnuts, roughly chopped
60g sunflower seeds
60g pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons flax seeds
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 to 2 tablespoons maple syrup
60g coconut oil, melted
125ml apple juice
130g dried mixed berries and cherries
Set the oven to 150°C and line one or two large baking trays with greaseproof paper.
Put all the dry ingredients into a large bowl except the dried fruit and if you are using flaked almonds rather than chopped whole almonds, keep these to one side for later.
Add the maple syrup, melted coconut oil and apple juice.
Add more maple syrup if you prefer your granola a little sweeter.
Mix well, making sure the liquid coats all the dry ingredients.
Tip the mixture onto one or two large baking trays and spread out so that it is evenly distributed.
Bake for around 40 minutes but stir it around halfway through and after about 30 thirty minutes. Take care not to burn.
If using flaked almonds add them about 5 minutes before the end.
When the granola is toasted and beginning to brown remove from the oven and add the dried fruit.
Allow the granola to cool completely on the tray before storing in an airtight container.