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Seven Year Granola

September 1, 2011

I found this on someone else’s cooking blog and she called it Seven Year Granola because she tried different granola recipes for seven years until she found the one she was looking for.  It doesn’t take seven years to make. And it won’t take seven years to eat either (even if you don’t share it, which I confess, I usually don’t). It isn’t the quickest granola to make, but it’s well worth the extra time and effort.

3 cups quick cooking oats, ground to a fine powder in a blender, food processor, or coffee grinder

3 cups quick cooking oats

3 cups nuts (I usually use walnuts and/or pecans, almonds, and some sunflower seeds, but you can use whatever you like)

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp cardamom

½ tsp nutmeg (or mace)

1 cup brown sugar

½ cup butter

1/3 cup water

½ tsp salt (can omit if butter is salted)

2 tsp vanilla

raisins and dried cranberries (or whatever dried fruit you prefer, if any)

Combine the whole oats, ground oats, nuts, seeds and spices in a large bowl.  Mix the brown sugar, butter and water in a saucepan and heat until the butter is melted and bubbly. Stir the mixture till smooth.  Stir in the salt and vanilla.  Pour mixture over the oat mixture and use your hands to stir until well coated.  It should be uniformly moist – stir in another tablespoon or two of water if it isn’t. Let stand for about ten minutes.

Spread the mixture out on a large baking sheet, separating it into irregular clumps with your fingers, and allowing space between the clumps for the hot air to circulate. Slide into the middle of the oven and bake at 300 degrees F for 25-30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and stir, gently breaking up the mixture into small-to-medium sized clumps. Return to the oven and bake another 15 minutes or so before stirring again. Repeat the bake-and-stir until the mixture is a uniform golden brown and completely dry; this usually takes 1-1 1/2 hours. Cool completely, then stir in any dried fruit you want to use.

I usually eat this with Greek honey yogurt from Trader Joe’s.

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