Monday, October 8, 2012

Strawberry, Vanilla and Coconut Granola

A while ago I got on this kick. I became hooked on eating this granola that I would buy at Fresh & Easy with plain yoghurt. It became a really easy breakfast/lunch/between show snack. It's a great granola and my favorite thing about it is the chunks of freeze-dried strawberries scattered throughout.

I had pulled a recipe for french chocolate granola a few months back and stuck it on my fridge with the hopes that I would be inspired to try it, but every time I thought about granola, it was the strawberry one that I wanted.

The other day, I saw freeze dried strawberries on sale in the store and I had an Aha! moment. Why not just make my own big batch of granola? I buy it so often anyway and I had literally every ingredient except for the strawberries. So, scoop up the strawberries I did and I scurried home to whip up a monster batch of granola. Since I was making this for myself, I played around and added in some coconut and some vanilla.

This granola is extremely yummy. It's really filling. It's not super sweet, but it gives you lots of energy. I made double the amount here because I knew I would eat it all. I love looking at the jars in the pantry. They fill me with sunshiney joy.

Strawberry, Coconut and Vanilla Granola

3 Cups Oats (not quick-cook)
1/2 Cup Shredded Coconut
3 Tablespoons Sugar
Pinch of Salt
6 Tablespoons Honey
2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1oz Freeze Dried Strawberries

Preheat the oven to 325F.

In a small saucepan, heat up the honey and the oil until it is very very liquidy. Take off the heat and stir in the vanilla.
In a mixing bowl, combine the oats, coconut, salt and sugar. Pour over the liquid ingredients and mix well to coat. Spread the mixture on a cookie sheet in a thin even layer. Put in the oven. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring at the ten and twenty minute marks until the granola is golden.

Take the pan out of the oven and let cool, stirring occasionally so that it doesn't form one big sheet. When it's cool, mix in the strawberries and store in a nice big glass jar.

Eat with plain yoghurt at the dining room table while reading the latest issue of Saveur.

Makes about 4 Cups.

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