Monday, January 27, 2014

sweet and salty dark chocolate and coconut granola.

In an act of desperation that occurred last week, I found myself spending an inordinate amount of money on a bag of Brooklyn made granola because I was hungry and because it didn't contain a plethora of ingredients that I couldn't pronounce.  I walked to work that morning feeling immensely guilty wondering how someone who calls herself a cook could have been suckered into purchasing something that I could easily make for about a quarter of the price and end up with double the amount.  Then I heard my stomach growl and I remembered the reason.  

Rather unsurprisingly, the granola was ridiculously good.  The jury is still out on whether or not that justifies the price but it made me feel a little bit better about spending my money on it.  (And now that I think about it, purchasing some also supports a local business so maybe it was a good use of my money.) Regardless of all that, purchasing it was a one time thing (or so I hope) and this weekend I set out to rectify the situation but making my own batch because isn't imitation the sincerest form of flattery?  

This granola is everything I want to eat in the morning.  Slightly salty, slightly sweet with a plethora of shredded coconut and some flaked chocolate to make it feel as if you are really indulging.  I'm partial to eating it by the handful in between conference calls but when I have the chance (and the time) to really enjoy breakfast, I find it best when served with milk and sliced banana or yogurt and diced mango.  

Sweet and Salty Dark Chocolate and Coconut Granola
Recipe inspired by the Early Bird Granola 

Granola is one of those things that I can't understand why people buy (I'm looking at myself when I make that statement).  You can make a batch on Sunday and have it last you about 2 weeks!

4 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut (or unsweetened coconut chips)
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup olive oil
3 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup chopped 72% dark chocolate 

Preheat over to 300 degrees.  In a large bowl combine the oats, flaked coconut, and salt.

In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the sugar, maple syrup and olive oil until the sugar has just dissolved, then remove from heat. Pour the liquid over the oats, stirring to make sure all of the dry ingredients are coated with with liquid mixture.  

Line a large rimmed baking sheet with a silicone baking map or parchment and spread granola over it.  Bake until dry and lightly golden, about 35 - 40 minutes, stirring granola a few times a long the way.

Remove granola from oven and allow to cool.  When cool, fold in the chocolate and then store in an air-tight container.  Granola will keep for about 2 weeks in an air-tight container (but I guarantee it wont last that long). Makes about 6 cups. 

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