Thursday, May 29, 2008

Canyon Granola

I go ga ga for good granola. Since my frugal nature hated paying big bucks for good granola, I set out to find the perfect granola recipe. After two years I found the Holy Grail of Granola Recipes in the book Cowgirl Cuisine by Paula Disbrowe. This recipe possessed everything I looked for in a good granola: great flavor, a good crunch, quality ingredients, chunky bits of goodness, and a nutritional mix of grains.

The milk powder, whole wheat flour, and flaxseed meal help the granola clump together, and they help boost the nutritional value of this granola by providing valuable protein and fiber. The original recipe called for adding dried fruit after the granola cooled, but I found that the dried fruit eventually hardened after a few days. I simply add my dried or fresh fruit right before I'm ready to eat my granola. Also I didn't have any pepitas the first time I tried the recipe, so feel free to substitute any combination of nuts. Finally, I tried substituting honey for molasses once and the granola was more apt to burn in the oven, so I now stick with molasses.

I hope you seek out Ms. Disbrowe's book because it contains other top-notch recipes and some great essays about transitioning from being a New Yorker to a Texan. Currently the book is listed at a bargain price at amazon.com.


Canyon Granola

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup pecan or walnut halves
  • 1/2 cup pepitas (roasted, hulled pumpkin seeds)
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1/3 cup ground flaxseed meal

  1. Place the oven racks on the upper and lower third of the over and preheat to 300 degrees.
  2. Combine the maple syrup, brown sugar, oil, and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally and cook until the brown sugar is dissolved. Stir in the vanilla.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the oats, pecans, pepitas, sunflower seeds, flour, milk powder, and flaxseed meal. Pour the syrup mixture over the dry ingredients. Combine and mix well.
  4. Divide the mixture between two baking sheets.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, and then stir granola with spatula. Rotate the sheets to ensure even baking.
  6. Bake another 20 minutes. Stir and rotate pans again.
  7. Bake until the mixture has a fragrant, toasty aroma - about 10 to 15 minutes. Cool the granola in the pans.
  8. When the mixture is cool, store in an airtight container.

2 comments:

Marianne said...

That looks pretty darn good...I'll have to try it. I've been lazy and buying granola at The Merc...pricey but satisfies my granola craving.

Steve O' said...

Mike,

Looks good! Will compare / contrast to our stand-by version this weekend.

http://web.mac.com/saodell/iWeb/Just%20Photos/For%20the%20Holidays_files/slideshow.html?slideIndex=5