Saturday, February 20, 2010

Crunch time


For the longest time I have been making my granola with raisins and dried cranberries... but I'm on serious coconut kick right now so I thought I'd give that a go. With a little inspiration from Orangette, I came up with this recipe for pecan coconut granola with chocolate. The shredded coconut gives the granola a contrasting texture and adds just the right amount of sweetness to each bite. You can really use any nuts that you like, but I went for pecans in this recipe. Almonds would make a nice substitute, though. The dark chocolate is optional, but really, why do that to yourself?

I love using maple syrup in my cooking, the earthy sweetness is like nothing else. And it doesn't overwhelm other ingredients like honey does. Add whatever you like--dried cherries, apricots, raisins, cinnamon, sunflower seeds, toasted walnuts--to make the mixture your own. I hope you enjoy!

Chocolate Coconut Granola

3 cups rolled oats (not instant)
1 cup toasted unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup toasted pecans (roughly chopped)
1 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp light brown sugar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
6 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp good vanilla extract
¼ c. good dark chocolate finely chopped (optional)

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Spread coconut evenly on baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes or until lightly browned, giving it a good stir about half way through. To toast the pecans, spread them evenly on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until they are crisp and aromatic. Be sure to give them a toss or two, as well, to ensure even toasting. Remove and let cool before coarsely chopping.

In a large bowl, mix the oats, toasted coconut, toasted pecans, salt, and brown sugar.


In a small saucepan, heat the maple syrup and vegetable oil over low heat while whisking for about 1 minute, until smooth. Put mixture in a small bowl and whisk in the vanilla. Pour mixture over oats and mix with rubber spatula until every last oat is covered with sweetness.

Spread the mixture evenly on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring about half way through to make sure it cooks evenly. After the granola is a beautiful golden brown color, take it out of the oven and let cool completely before adding the finely chopped chocolate. Store in an airtight container and you've got smashing granola for days!


Yields about 6 cups.

3 comments:

  1. I love homemade granola!! This one is different than the one I make...can't wait to try it!

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  2. Great! Let me know how you like it, I'd love any feedback!

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  3. Try using coconut oil too -- it's super healthy and adds a little more coconut flavor.

    Love your food blog! I didn't know my cousin was a cook.

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