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Honey Maple Granola


I have never really thought of myself as a hippie.  I do not wear birkenstocks, I do not own anything tie-dyed, I am hopelessly addicted to Gossip Girl.  Pretty un-hippie-ish, if you ask me.  And yet, one Sunday, I felt this inexplicable tug, whispering into my ear, “homemade granola.”

Um, excuse me?  Homemade granola?  Seriously?

But that little whisper became a craving, and soon I was sitting over a bowl of oats, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and farmer’s market honey and maple syrup.  And you know what?  I was a pretty happy little wannabe-hippie.

Because this stuff is really, really good.  So good that I’m shocked at how quickly it was eaten — let’s just say that “breakfast for the week” soon became “after dinner snack.”  And by Wednesday, I was back to eating instant oatmeal at my desk, because my lovely bag of homemade granola was a (fond) memory.

I will also say, that if you are looking for healthy breakfast options on a budget, this recipe is about as good as you can get.  I bought oatmeal, raisins, cashews and pumpkin seeds from bulk bins at my favorite health food store, and I think all together they cost about $2.  And, a quick note on maple syrup — I buy Grade A Dark Amber syrup from the farmer’s market to use for baking, and it has an incredible strong maple flavor.  If you can get your hands on a bottle of it, definitely give it a try!

In fact, give this whole recipe a try.  It’s worth embracing your inner hippie.

Honey Maple Granola

1 1/2 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup chopped cashews
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
4 tbsp maple syrup (I use “Grade A Dark Amber” maple syrup in baking)
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp canola oil
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup raisins

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients except the raisins.
3. Spread out the granola on a baking sheet lined with silipat, or on a nonstick baking sheet.
4. Bake the granola for about 30 minutes, stirring every 8 minutes or so.  Remove from oven, allow to cool, and store in an airtight container for up to two weeks (if it lasts that long!).

Makes about 2 cups of granola.