Granola
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: Serves: 4 to 6 (makes 3.5 cups)
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup water
  • 4 ounces pitted dates (about 7 to 8 Medjool or 14 to16 Deglet Noor)
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract (or seeds from 1 to 2 vanilla beans)
  • 1¼ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup sliced almonds (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place the water, dates, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a blender and set aside for at least 15 minutes (so the dates can soften). Preheat the oven to 250°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper (see photos below) and set them aside.
  2. Combine the oats, raisins, and almonds (if using) in a medium bowl.
  3. Blend the dates, water, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg until smooth. Pour this into the bowl of oats, raisins, and nuts, and stir well.
  4. Spread the granola evenly between the two baking sheets, breaking up any large clumps. Bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove the baking sheets from the oven, and shuffle the granola around with a spatula. Return to the oven (but switch racks) for even browning) for 20 to 25 minutes more, or until lightly browned. Completely cool the granola for maximum crunchiness. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator to preserve freshness.
Notes
Juice instead of water: For added sweetness and flavor, try substituting the water with any unsweetened fruit juice (like orange, tangerine, pineapple or apple). I've used orange juice instead of water, and also added the zest from the orange and it was really tasty (if you try this, don't blend the zest, just add it at the end while stirring everything together).

Nut options: Any kind of chopped or small nuts would work here, but I think the texture of the sliced almonds is my favorite. I’ve also used chopped walnuts, pecans and sunflower seeds.

Raw raisins and nuts: If you don't want to cook your raisins and/or nuts, feel free to toss them in with the oat mixture after cooking.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 0.5 cup Calories: 254 Fat: 7.2g Saturated fat: 0.7g Carbohydrates: 44.1g Sugar: 20.9g Sodium: 2mg Fiber: 6.0g Protein: 6.4g Cholesterol: 0g
Recipe by Straight Up Food at https://www.straightupfood.com/blog/2015/02/04/granola/