With cookbooks coming in over the transom, it’s sometimes hard to go back to a well-done recipe. But there is one that I make on a regular basis–Coconut Granola Crunch from Gifts Cooks Love.
While Christmas offers its own special profusion–I amass nuts and dried fruit like a frantic, cookie-baking squirrel–when the tide of good will recedes after Christmas, my kitchen is littered with gift jars of honey, sparkly cellophane bags of trail mix, and odd assortments of gift basket foods.
Not that I’m complaining!
But if I’m not attentive, they’ll still be tumbling out of the cabinets in August. My solution is granola and I love this recipe because its generous teaspoon of salt is in salivating counterpoint to sweet fruit and coconut. I also love it because it’s adaptable. Quick oats or traditional oats, nuts or trail mix, honey or honey spread, brown sugar or turbinado. It all makes for delicious variations every time. Just don’t forget the salt.
This is today’s rough adaptation of Coconut Granola Crunch.
1/4 canola oil
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey (I used cinnamon honey spread, softened in the microwave)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (maybe a bit more) of ground flax seeds (I guess these are good for you–they make me feel a bit better about the sugar and honey)
a spoonful of vanilla flavored sugar (I’ve been working my way through this stuff for a long time–2013 is the year it goes!)
2 cups oats (mine were a mix of quick Irish oats, and regular Quaker)
a handful of sliced almonds
a biggish handful of trail mix, chopped to make the dried pineapple and papaya more manageable
Mix the oil, sugar, honey, flax seed, salt, and vanilla sugar. Stir in the oats, working the oil mixture through them. Spread on a silpat-lined cookie sheet and bake at 325 for 7-10 minutes. Give it a stir about halfway through. Sprinkle on the almonds, and cook for another 5 minutes. Give it a stir, sprinkle on the the coconut, and another 5 minutes.
Take it out of the oven, give it a stir, and sprinkle on the trail mix ( or dried fruit). Let it sit on the cookie sheet to crisp up, then scoop into a tin.
It’s good on morning yogurt, in a bowl of cereal, and instead of oatmeal in oatmeal cookies. And now there’s more maneuvering room on my countertop!