When trying to come up with this year's (okay, now last year's) handmade holiday gift the boys expressed a VERY strong preference for cooking, versus crafting. Cool. In order to guarantee the "handmade"part of the deal, I came up with granola. Easy enough for kids to measure, stir, and add their own creative ingredients (and mine). Two factors came in to play on this recipe...ONE, I wanted a granola that I could eat without feeling guilty. TWO, it absolutely had to be inspired by the granola at my favorite bakery--Bread & Cie.
Martha Stewart FOOD helped with requirement number ONE. As for inspiration from Bread & Cie.? That's where the Corn Pops came in. It's not even that I had this cereal as a kid (I didn't) or that I crave it as an adult (I don't). It's just that Corn Pops bring a bit of whimsy and surprise to an otherwise quiet concoction.
GOOD MORNING GRANOLA makes 8 delicious cups
ingredients 4 cups old fashioned rolled oats 1 cup toasted wheat gern 1/2 cup flax seed 2 teaspoons cinnamon 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger 1/2 cup unsalted sunflower seeds 1/2 cup pepita seeds 1 cup chopped walnuts 1 1/2 cups Corn Pops 1/2 cup dried berries 5 tablespoons robust molasses 3 tablespoons maple syrup 1/3 cup olive oil 1/3 cup water
directions 1. Heat oven to 300 degrees with rack in center. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, wheat germ, flax seed, cinnamon, ginger, seeds, and walnuts. In a small bowl, combine molasses, oil, and 1/3 cup water and pour over the oat mixture. Stir well until well coated. Spread evenly in two baking pans
2. Bake, stirring every 20 minutes or so for even cooking until dry and lightly browned--about 45 minutes. Let granola cool to room temperature, add Corn Pops and berries then store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month.
The boys were liberal with the cinnamon, and added dried cranberries. I threw in the pepita seeds for extra nutrients and crunch. We used olive oil instead of the recommended canola oil, and we added maple syrup because we had just watched Elf, and Elf puts maple syrup on everything....
In the end, we thought it was a huge hit. I even used it as a topping with Greek yogurt and our Orange Challah French Toast!