Granola!

Yeah, so my politics are moving left, my lifestyle is moving left and I find myself doing things like carrying my own water bottle “to support our municipal water system”, shopping at co-ops and making my own…granola. Some of my closest friends here wear nothing but Birkenstocks all summer and introduced me to cloth sandwich bags. Whatevs. I work at the University of Minnesota studying long-term outcomes of children in poverty, for Pete’s sake! What did you possibly EXPECT was going to happen! These people, their politics, their social views all make sense to me and make the views I used to subscribe to seem a little…barbaric. But, I digress.

As a result of our lifestyle changes, our children are becoming a bit crunchy, too. Maybe daughter number 2, who is inherently an earth-carer, is the one who started it all, I don’t know. Regardless, this evening we made granola and I thought I’d share the recipe. It’s inexpensive, easy and desperately…CRUNCHY! Look out…you may stop shaving your pits…no, I haven’t gone THAT far…yet 😉

Granola

4 cups rolled oats

1/2 cup coconut

1 cup nuts, finely chopped (I have used almonds or peanuts)

3/4 tsp. salt (leave this out if your nuts are salted)

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup unsalted sunflower seeds

3/4 cup honey (I have toyed with adding more, but haven’t tried it yet)

1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 cup brown sugar

2 Tbsp molasses

8 oz. dried fruit (we use dried cranberries)

In a large pot or bowl combine all dry ingredients. In a separate bowl combine all wet ingredients. Then combine all ingredients together. Stir til well mixed.

Spread on foil-lined baking pans (they call them jelly-roll pans here in MN). Bake in a 300 or 325 degree oven for 40 minutes or until lightly browned. Be sure to stir mixture and re-spread it out every 10 minutes during baking. Don’t allow to burn. When it is finished baking, place sheets on cooling rack and allow to cool some.

After baking, it should be a light golden brown color.

Break apart before it is completely cool. (If you leave it you will have a giant granola bar, which you could break into smaller bars, or whack at with a metal spoon to break it up into yogurt-friendly granola.) Add dried fruit and place in airtight container.

Finished product with dried cranberries added
No worries-that container is BPA free...of course 😉
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