I recently found out that my beloved college roommate started a food blog last month too! In college Laura was the most peaceful and patient person I knew. She was able to put up with my emotional rants and topsy-turvy life as I: planned a wedding, waited tables, played resident adviser, finished my internship, and completed my senior portfolio project. Sometimes she was the only comforting part of my day. Everyone needs a Laura.
Catching up, she was reminiscing about our favorite dorm room snack, my mom's granola. I had almost forgot; we lived on granola that year! Of course I had to be reminded of this, my life was so hectic, I had twitchy-eye syndrome for several months after I graduated! Thankfully these days I am much better at managing stress. Instead of taking on too much; I make it my goal to do fewer things, but do them well.
When I make granola, I tend to do as mom did, use whatever I find in the pantry and mix it with whole oats! But when I'm planning ahead, the recipe below is my favorite combination. I love the color the pepitas, dried cherries and golden raisins bring. I minimize the spice. Cinnamon is powerful--too much will mask all the other flavors!
In my family we eat this cereal with milk or yogurt. But we also make this granola without the dried fruit, and serve it as a crunchy topping for ice cream with berry sauce, and over fresh cut fruit! YUM.
Laura's food blog is http://darkredcrema.com and is definitely worth checking out! In addition to being a superb cook, she is an amazing photographer! If only I could take pictures like Laura...
2 cups oats
¾ cup slivered almonds
½ cup Pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds)
¼ cup flax seeds
1 cup shredded coconut
2 Tb. oil or melted butter
3 Tb. honey
¼ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. salt
½ cup dried cherries
½ cup golden raisins
Preheat the oven to 350*. Spray a rimmed cookie sheet with non-stick spray. Mix oats, seeds and nuts on the cookie sheet. Pour oil and honey over the mixture and sprinkle with salt and cinnamon. Toss well. Spread the mixture evenly over the cookie sheet.
Bake for 20-25 minutes—until the coconut is golden-brown. Cool on the cookie sheet.
Once cooled, mix in the dried fruit and store in an air-tight container. Makes 5 ½ cups.