Good Eats and Sweet Treats from My Small Boston Kitchen

Homemade Granola

Granola is such a fun thing to make, because it’s very forgiving, and you can make it a thousand different ways. I’ve noticed a significant drop in interest for my blog since I started posting gluten-free recipes, which is a little sad but also understandable, so I’m sharing something today that is still gluten-free, but much more approachable and mainstream. It doesn’t use any funky flours or starches or anything out of the ordinary, so you probably already have the ingredients in your kitchen. And truth be told – I used regular oats – so they aren’t technically gluten-free, but you can easily make this totally gluten-free if need be.

I’m nearing the end of my six weeks of gluten-free, dairy-free living, and sadly I’m not feeling better so chances are I’ll get the all clear to start incorporating things like gluten back into my diet. We’ll see how it all plays out, but hopefully before too long I’ll have something all full of gluten to share with you! I am making a first anniversary cake later this week (for a couple whose wedding cake I made last year!) so perhaps I’ll share that with you too.

Anyway… we’re supposed to be talking granola. This granola. Made with maple syrup and olive oil, and plenty of nuts and dried fruit. I think sometimes granola gets a bad rep because of it’s high calorie and fat content, but if you make it at home, you can dictate what goes into it – meaning you can actually make it pretty darn good for you! This granola has heart-healthy olive oil, and just enough maple syrup to make it slightly sweet. It has lots of healthy fats from the almonds and walnuts, and some added protein from the quinoa. There’s even some omega-3 present here, from the chia seeds! Needless to say, I don’t feel guilty piling this into a bowl of (dairy-free) yogurt and fresh berries. It’s insanely addictive as a snack, and works great as an addition to breakfast as well.

I was inspired by  granola recipes on The Kitchn and The Apron Archives, which both state that a granola is simple an 8-1 (or 9-1) ratio of dry ingredients to wet ingredients. I loosely followed those guidelines, and found the resulting granola to be the perfect texture and sweetness and combination of ingredients. Absolutely delightful. Check out those posts for ideas on different granola ingredients, and get cooking!

Homemade Granola

2 ¾ cups rolled oats (not quick oats)
2 tablespoons chia seeds
2tablespoons dry quinoa
½ cup chopped almonds
½ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup shredded coconut
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried currants

Preheat oven to 275° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with nonstick cooking spray.

1) Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.

2) Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl, and pour over dry, then gently mix until completely incorporated. Bake for about an hour, stirring every 15 minutes.

3) After baking, add 1-2 parts dried fruit such as raisins, blueberries, or cranberries.

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