Welcome to Natasha's Creative Confections! If you have stumbled upon this blog page, then you're in for a real treat! One of my favorite things to do is bake. If you choose to read on you will find pictures and recipes of some of the fabulous treats that I have created. So take a look around and enjoy!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Homemade Granola

I've always wanted to make granola from scratch. I thought it would be a lot of work, but it actually was surprisingly easy! And I even had all (or, most of) the ingredients in my cabinet.

- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. salt
- 3 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. vegetable oil
- 1/4 c. honey
- 1/4 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 c. almonds
- 1/2 c. hazelnuts---> which, i didn't have :( i used walnuts...probably not the best idea...
- 1/3 c. golden raisins (i used regular)
- 1/3 c. dried cherries

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (DO NOT USE WAX PAPER. I learned this the hard way...it just sticks to it!)

2. In a large bowl, toss the oats with the cinnamon and salt. In a medium bowl, stir together the oil, honey, brown sugar, and vanilla. Whisk until completely combined.

3. Pour the honey mixture over the oats mixture and use your hands to combine them: Gather up some of the mixture in each hand, and make a fist. Repeat until all of the oats are coated with the honey mixture.

4. Pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Spread it evenly, but leave a few clumps here and there for texture. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and use a metal spatula to lift and flip the granola. Sprinkle the almonds over the granola and return baking sheet to oven.

5. Bake for 5 minutes, then remove from oven and use spatula to lift and flip granola again. Sprinkle the hazelnuts and almonds over the granola and return the baking sheet to the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from oven. Let cool completely. Sprinkle the raisins and cherries over the granola and use your hands to transfer it to an airtight container. The granola will keep for 1 week.

After pulling the wax paper off, little piece by little piece, and finally being able to taste the granola, it was pretty delicious! And if you can use hazelnuts, I bet it would be even tastier!!

What other things would be good to add to homemade granola?

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