A couple of years ago I became very conscious of the number of ways in which packaged food is enhanced to strike the bliss point of taste – that perfect intersection of fat, sugar & salt, that sets us up to crave ever saltier, sweeter and fattier foods, as I describe in Overcoming Overeating over on my other blog at Authentic Impact.
I began to read labels a lot more carefully, and somewhat horrified at what I was seeing, began making my own granola. Through a process of trial and error, I developed this recipe. I like a fairly dry granola to sprinkle over yoghurt, with a goodly amount of dried fruit. If you want yours more sticky and chunky, increase the proportion of “sauce”.
- 1/2 c brown sugar
- 1/2 c vegetable oil (canola or safflower)
- 1 c unsweetened apple sauce
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 10 c old-fashioned rolled oats
- 3 c chopped nuts & seeds (I use hazelnuts, almonds, pecans and pumpkin seeds in equal portions)
- 4 c dried fruit (I use cranberries, raisins and golden raisins in equal portions)
- Preheat the oven to 325°F convection or 350°F.
- Make the "sauce": Put the brown sugar, oil, applesauce, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Set aside.
- Put the oats and nuts in a large bowl and toss to combine. Pour the warm "sauce" over the dry ingredients and still until everything is evenly coated.
- Spread the raw granola in a thin layer over two baking sheets and bake for 40 minutes, until the oats are evenly browned. Turn the mixture every 10 minutes or so to allow everything to bake evenly.
- Add the raisins and cranberries to the cooked granola when it has had a chance to cool.
- Store in an airtight container and/or freeze until it's ready to use.