Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Honey Love Granola

Lately I have been on a big granola kick (love to eat it for breakfast or lunch sprinkled on Greek yogurt with fruit!)...so, instead of buying another box this week, I decided to make it myself! I like this recipe because you can tailor it to your family’s likes. Not big walnut fans? Sub in pecans! Don’t like coconut? Omit it! It’s that simple and it's that good!
This recipe makes a large amount and stays good for a week in a sealed container (however, if your house is anything like mine, I doubt it’ll last that long!)...

1 stick butter
1/3 cup honey
1 Tbl orange zest (approx the zest of one medium orange)
1 lb old fashioned rolled oats (do NOT use quick oats!)
1 cup slivered almonds
3/4 cup walnut pieces
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup coconut
1 cup dried fruit (I used 1/2 c dried blueberries & 1/2 c dried cranberries- you can use whatever you like- apricots, dates, cherries, raisins...just enough to equal one cup)
4 oz high end dark chocolate, chopped (totally optional)

Preheat oven to 325F. Spray two baking pans with nonstick cooking spray. In a small saucepan melt butter with honey & orange zest over low heat.

While the butter is melting, combine oats, almonds, walnuts, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg, coconut, and dried fruit(s) in a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add the butter/honey mixture to the oats mixture and mix until moistened. Spread the oat mixture evenly between the two pans.

Bake for a total of 30-40 minutes, removing the pans from the oven every 10 minutes or so to stir the granola. This prevents over-browning and helps the granola cook evenly.

Remove the granola from the oven when it is a nice golden brown. Cool completely. If using, add the chopped dark chocolate to the granola and mix in. Store in a Tupperware container for up to one week.

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