You know those people who can eat anything they want and never gain an ounce? The types that polish off a bowl of ice cream four out of seven days a week as a snack? I'm married to one of them! Seriously, my husband has the metabolism of an 18 year old boy! How is that fair?! He's also got a pretty busy and erratic work schedule that often leaves him with little time to stop and eat, so I'm always looking for ways to give him something healthy and easy to snack on. This Sweet, Salty, Seedy Granola is one of his new favorites and the joy with which he nibbles on it, almost makes up for the irrational resentment I feel at his being able to eat whatever the heck he wants! The universe is a cruel place sometimes!!
Granola is one of those great portable, fairly non-perishable snacks--put some in a little resealable baggie and you're good to go. Of course you can buy it ready made but it's really easy to put together and you can control what goes into it. I've already shared this recipe for Granola with you (aptly named after my husband) and it's terrific but if you're looking for something a little less sweet, a little more cereal-like and with more variety of nuts and seeds, you've got to try this. It's addictive!
My husband often sprinkles some on his cereal or on ice cream (yes, that afternoon bowl) or carries some around in his trusty backpack. It's also great in a parfait, layered with yogurt and fruit. If salty/sweet is your thing, you're going to go ga-ga over this!
And unless you're blessed from the gods with a stellar calorie-burning body, I apologize in advance. Grab a couple of handfuls on your way to the gym--at least the walk there will be enjoyable!
Sweet, Salty, Seedy Granola
Makes about 10 cups
Feel free to make any kind of substitutions with the seeds and nuts or increase or decrease the amounts--this recipe is very versatile.
Prep Time: 10-12 minutes; Bake Time: 40-50 minutes
2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not the instant or quick variety)
1 1/2 cups wheat germ
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
3 tablespoons sesame seeds
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup almonds, sliced
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup honey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1. Make sure the rack is in the center of the oven and preheat to 350ºF. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Into a large bowl, place the oats, wheat germ, coconut, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, almonds, cinnamon and salt and mix together very well. In a small bowl whisk together the oil, honey and vanilla and pour over the dry ingredients. Mix well.
3. Turn the mixture out onto the prepared baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Bake for 40-50 minutes, stirring with a large spoon, frequently to insure even browning. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool entirely before mixing in the cranberries.
4. Store the granola in an airtight container (I like to use Mason jars) at room temperature for at least a week.
Note: Recipe adapted from Flour by Joanne Chang.