At this point, you combine your dry ingredients and hit them with some flavor: maple syrup for sweetness, cardamom and cinnamon and even turmeric for a savory edge, plus some salt and more olive oil to hold it all together. This is when you can add anything else you have in your pantry that may be a good fit. I went with sweetened coconut flakes; dried fruit or any other nut would be great, too.
Then it’s back in the oven for just a bit to allow everything to meld. Your nose will help detect when it’s done: a wonderfully nutty aroma will fill your kitchen.
More likely than not, I’m still sprinkling this granola on my daily bowl of plain Greek yogurt. But it’s also there for when I want a bowl to start my morning, and don’t have time (or excess funds) to stop at the local coffee shop.
MAPLE CASHEW GRANOLA
2 cups rolled or quick-cooking oats
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup raw cashews
1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup raw slivered almonds
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon allspice
Pinch of salt
Heat oven to 325 degrees.
Place oats on a dry baking sheet and drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Roast for about 20 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes. If oats look pretty brown, keep an eye on them. Cook until light brown and fragrant.
Remove from oven and scoop into a medium bowl. Set aside.
Wipe off baking sheet so it’s pretty dry. Add cashews, sunflower seeds and almonds. Roast in oven for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them; if they start to smell too fragrant or turn dark brown, remove from oven even sooner. When nuts are done, scoop into the same bowl as the oats.
Add maple syrup and remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to bowl and toss immediately to coat the mixture. Add cinnamon, cardamom, allspice and salt and toss again until thoroughly mixed. Taste granola and adjust seasonings as desired.
Lay a piece of parchment paper on the same baking sheet you’ve been using, and add contents of bowl back to sheet. Return to the oven for 5 minutes, and cook, stirring once. Remove from oven, let cool, then eat or store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Makes about 3 cups granola.
Source: Michelle Stark, Tampa Bay Times