travel & recipes

The ultimate granola mix

In my search for the perfect granola I have experimented with making different versions for quite sometime, and I think I have found my ultimate combination. 
Granola is pretty easy to make and it stays fresh as long as you store it in airtight containers, so I usually make large quantities every few weeks (I also think that I am slightly addicted to this combo...).

oats 4 cups
raw pecans, chopped 1 cup
raw pumpkin seeds 1 cup
coconut oil 1 cup
2-6 teaspoons of cinnamon (this mainly depends on how much you like cinnamon, you can always add more later)
generous pinch of good sea salt
zest of 2-3 oranges
unsweetened cranberries 1/2 cup
unsweetened coconut flakes 1/2 cup
1/2 cup agave
few drops of vanilla (optional)

preheat oven to 375°F
In a large bowl mix together the oats, pecans, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, orange zest and salt.
If using agave and/or vanilla pour it in a bowl with the coconut oil, mix together and pour over the oat mix. I tried this recipe with and without agave, sadly I find that without it the granola tends to be slightly boring...
mix well and taste, adjust as needed, you can add cinnamon to bring the sweetness out without adding sugar. 
the aroma of the orange will be much stronger after baking so don't over do it before it's baked, you can always add and adjust throughout the baking process and even once it's ready. 

Line a baking sheet with paper, my favorite is 'if you care' unbleached parchment, you can usually save and reuse those too, spread the granola in an even layer, you would most likely be better off using two baking sheets and bake for 30-45 minutes. 
This is very important, Most ovens aren't even in the way they distribute heat , so you MUST rotate the sheets while they bake, I set a 10 minute timer and make sure to switch between top and bottom racks, as well as mixing the granola on the sheets. anything that is closer to the edges will brown faster so make sure you mix well! Keep checking for color, that's the best indication as the granola won't dry until it's out of the oven and has cooled down. 
Once it looks almost ready take it out and let cool, it will darken and dry as it cools down. 
Now mix in the cranberries and coconut flakes and it's ready! store in airtight jars and enjoy with your favorite nut milk or yogurt!