My Mom is the queen of granola. She varies the ingredients in her homemade granola from time to time, but the basic texture and dependable goodness are always the same. My sister Melissa has created a number of granola recipes since she began cooking, none of which are anything like Mom’s, but instead they usually have a wide variety of ingredients and an addicting crunchiness. I think that my freshman year of college I probably consumed a gallon or two of that granola all on my own just on the occasions I stopped by her apartment to say hello.
I have made granola in the past, though usually either under the supervision of my Mom (or with my Mom on the phone), or with an end product that was nearly inedible. Probably part of my problem is that I would like to mix the flavor of Mom’s with the texture of Melissa’s. A few years ago I attempted to make a crunchy granola, added 5 or 6 different uncooked grains (wheat berries, barley, buckwheat, etc.) to the oats and came up with something that smelled fantastic, but was destined to break your teeth. My roommates felt sorry for me and ate some, but in the end I threw most of it away.
With a few years of added cooking experience and my Mom unreachable by phone (don’t know what she was up to), I successfully created a tasty granola recipe this morning from some interesting ingredients that gave it a little crunch. Give it a try if you’re feeling adventurous; putting it together doesn’t take very long.
Toast 5 cups of oats on a baking sheet at 350 F for about 10 minutes
In a large bowl mix:
¾ cup canola oil
1 cup honey
2 Tablespoons flax seeds
½ cup flax meal
3 Tablespoons raw millet
¾ cup puffed millet
1 cup shredded coconut (I used unsweetened)
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon salt
Combine mixture with oats and stir until completely coated. Divide onto two baking sheets and bake on the top oven rack at 350 F for 5 minutes, then stir with a wooden spoon. Return to oven and repeat 5 minute intervals until oats are a light golden brown (they will darken as they cool). This took me 15 minutes or so, but it may vary depending on your oven. Stir on tray every few minutes as it cools to prevent sticking. Store in airtight container.
Variation: Exchange the ingredients you don’t have for some you do, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, unsalted nuts, or soy grits. You may also want to add a cup or two of dried fruit, but this should be done right after you take it out of the oven.