Happy New Year. The holidays were very good to me. Much time was spent in the kitchen and around the table with friends and family. Lots of laughs and walks along the ocean. New memories were created and old traditions were celebrated.
Another year has rolled by and I am still making granola. It is a staple in our house, perfect for a quick breakfast or snack. I am always experimenting with new combinations of rolled grains, dried fruits, sweeteners and spices. Not always a terribly scientific process. A little of this, a little of that or whatever happens to be in the house.
This particular version was inspired by a favourite cookie of mine over at 101cookbooks, Heidi’s version of the anzac cookie. It is a wonderful chewy oat cookie with coconut, orange zest, honey and orange blossom water. I took my basic tried and true granola recipe and adapted it with these flavours in mind. I added almonds and some beautiful dried cherries.
If you are not familiar with orange blossom water, it is water distilled from bitter-orange blossoms. It is used in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. I like its floral, sweet and slightly bitter taste. I only used 1 tsp as it has a fairly strong flavour but feel free to add more if you like or if you don’t have it on hand the orange zest adds lots of great flavour to the granola on its own.
As another year begins, perhaps you have resolved to start eating breakfast more regularly. If so, this recipe could be a great place to get you started. Having a good supply of granola in the freezer, yogurt in the fridge and some fresh fruit insures there is always a quick and healthy breakfast at your fingertips.
I hope this new year brings you light, laughter and continued inspiration in the kitchen.
- 3½ cups rolled oats
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut
- 1 cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup chopped almonds
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- ⅓ cup mild honey (I like wildflower)
- 2 tbsp water
- zest of one orange (preferably organic)
- 1 tsp orange blossom water
- 1 cup dried cherries
- Preheat the oven to 300F.
- In a large bowl mix the oats, coconut, sunflower seeds, almonds and salt. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan combine the coconut oil, honey, and water. Heat over medium heat until the coconut oil and honey are melted. Add the orange blossom water and orange zest.
- Pour the oil and honey mixture over the oat mixture and stir until combined. Scoop out onto 2 baking sheets and spread it out evenly.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes until light golden in colour. Stir every 10 minutes to ensure even browning. Let cool and add the dried cherries. Store in an airtight container or freeze to ensure freshness.