I am so glad that the summer is almost here. I always look forward to the fresh fruit of the summer, and the chance to eat outdoors again. There is something about enjoying fresh ingredients in the out of doors that truly creates extra happiness in life. Though it's been chilly, the sun has been shining more, which has made me crave more fresh fruits and veggies as I enjoy it. Naturally, granola came to mind as I was deciding what I wanted to eat for breakfast this weekend. I found some gorgeous raspberries to pair it with and set to making a simple maple almond (not alps) granola.
I have always loved granola. It has the right amount of crunch and flavours that I love. It also creates an atmosphere that only granola can make. Perhaps it's linked to memories of camping and breakfasts in foreign homes and places that make it so special - or maybe I'm thinking about it too much - but I think you understand that I enjoy granola.
I like to experiment with different flavours and combinations. I love that granola is so versatile! Around Christmas, I like to make a gingerbread version, and in the summer I like adding coconut. This time, I decided to go simple and add some almonds and maple syrup. What a delicious combination! I love eating it with fresh fruit and some soy yogurt! So much yum!
Simple Maple Almond Granola
Makes about 7 cups
5 ½ cups old fashioned oats
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp sea salt
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup roughly chopped almonds
½ cup coconut oil
¾ - 1 cup maple syrup (depending on your sweet tooth)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp pure almond extract
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a large baking sheet by putting parchment paper on it
2) Mix dry ingredients well in a large bowl
3) Melt coconut oil in a small saucepan and whisk in coconut oil and vanilla and almond extracts
4) Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and mix until oats and nuts are well coated
5) Spread granola evenly on the baking sheet (you may have to use two)
6) Bake for 10-15 minutes, being careful not to let it burn
7) Allow to completely dry, then crumble the chunks and store in an airtight container
Do you like granola as much as I do? What kinds of foods "feel like Summer" to you?