gem’s gorgeous granola
When you learn how easy it is to whip up a batch of this gem’s gorgeous granola you’ll be a convert. This version is much lower in sugar and oil than many store bought varieties and is full of nutritious ingredients. It is also about a quarter of the price of shop-bought granola. And everyone loves receiving it as a gift so I usually make a triple batch at Christmas.
Because this granola is much less sweet than many supermarket versions, adjust the sugar levels to suit your taste. Also, feel free to make substitutes for whatever seeds and nuts you and your family like. If you want your granola to stick together in bigger lumps, just stir a couple of egg whites through the mixture before cooking it.
You can use this in all manner of ways. I love it on top of plain yoghurt with a drizzle of honey and some chopped bananas. It is also yummy on top of oatmeal and is amazing, although on the less healthy end of the spectrum, on dark chocolate ice cream. Often it’s nice to just grab a handful as you pass through the kitchen in need of a snack.
It will sit happily in a jar for well over a week. If you leave it longer and want to ‘refresh’ it, simply toss it in a dry frying pan and heat through over a medium heat for a couple of minutes before using.
Active prep time: 5 mins. Cooking time: 40 mins
Ingredients – Makes around 900g (2.5lb)
225g (2 and a quarter cups) rolled (old fashioned) oats – buy gluten free oats if you are making for someone who is GF
120g (¾ cup) raw sunflower seeds
120g (¾ cup) white sesame seeds
240ml (1 cup) unsweetened apple sauce, or two eating apples finely grated
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
60g (1/4 cup) pure grade B maple syrup
2 tablespoons runny honey
125g (1 cups) whole raw natural almonds
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons rapeseed (canola) or coconut oil
zest of a large orange – don’t leave this out it makes such a difference
- Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F).
- Mix everything together well in a large mixing bowl, zest your orange straight over the bowl so that oils drop into the ingredients. I usually pop my bowl on my digital scales and dump each thing in one after the other, zeroing out each time to save mess. I use salad servers to mix it to avoid getting covered with everything.
- Spread the mixture out on one or two large unlined cookie sheets/baking sheets (depending on how big yours are). Make sure the mixture is spread thinly and evenly so that it will crisp rather than steam. Bake in the oven, turning over about halfway through baking with a large spatula and re-distributing the granola evenly during the baking process, most ovens will cook the outer edge of the tray fastest so I usually scoop the outside edges into the center to ensure even browning. The object is to get it evenly golden without toasting too much in any one place. This should take anything from about 40 minutes. All ovens vary so be sure to keep an eye (and a nose) on it towards the end as 5 minutes can mean the difference between lightly toasted and burnt!
- Once it’s baked, allow to cool for about an hour on the tray, then store in an airtight container or jar.
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