March 9, 2015

Cooking Cooking
Olive Oil Granola with Cashews, Pistachios and Pumpkin Seeds | www.Simmstown.com | Lisa Samuel

The Best Olive Oil Granola

Olive Oil Granola with Cashews, Pistachios and Pumpkin Seeds

The world probably doesn’t need another granola recipe.  There are certainly enough out there to choose from.  But, here goes anyway, because you never know when the next one you make might become your favorite.  And, because this is what we’re eating this week as we sit in the hospital and wait for Moe’s heart valve transplant.

Most granola recipes are too sweet for my liking, so this one has just a hint of maple syrup to give it an earthy sweetness that keeps it just shy of savory.  I like whole nuts in my granola, so I can pick those out and snack on them when I need a little something but not a lot of something.  If you like your granola on the sweet side, just add more maple syrup.  Or substitute honey.  If I were making this granola just for me, I would add coconut. But Elie will eat three-quarters of this granola, so there’s no coconut. The whisked egg white makes those great crunchy clusters that say: this is good granola! But, if you want to make a vegan version, feel free to leave it out. It will still be good.  While many granola recipes call for cinnamon, I like allspice.  And, as the names suggests, I love the faintly aromatic flavor (and health benefits) of olive oil in my granola, but you can substitute coconut oil or melted butter.  Elie likes his granola toasty, so I bake it just shy of starting to burn.

Take those tips into consideration and then make this granola your own.

We like to eat granola as a topping on our oatmeal, or occasionally even ice cream. Because this version is not too sweet, it adds great crunch to salads.  Of course, you can spoon it over yogurt, or eat it like cereal with milk.  Or just eat it straight from the container.  That’s what I do, most of the time.

P.S. Elie and I would like to thank all of you for your thoughts and prayers.  We are overwhelmed at the love and support we’re receiving for Moe’s recovery, and we want you to know how much we appreciate you. xo

Olive Oil Granola with Cashews, Pistachios and Pumpkin Seeds | www.Simmstown.com | Lisa Samuel

Olive Oil Granola with Cashews, Pistachios and Pumpkin Seeds | www.Simmstown.com | Lisa Samuel

Olive Oil Granola

Makes about 6 cups

2 cups whole rolled oats
1 cup quinoa flakes (you can substitute another cup of oats)
¾ cup raw pistachios
¾ cup raw cashews
¾ cup raw pumpkin seeds
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup maple syrup
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (a few grinds of the peppermill)
1 egg white, beaten until foamy
1 cup dried currants

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, quinoa flakes, pistachios, cashews and pumpkin seeds.

In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the olive oil, maple syrup, sea salt, allspice and black pepper.  Pour this mixture over the oat mixture and stir to combine.  Add the beaten egg white and stir it into the oat mixture until all of the oats are coated.

Pour the oat mixture onto a rimmed baking sheet and spread in an even layer.  Place in the oven and bake for about an hour, or until the granola is deeply golden brown.  While the granola is baking, be sure to stir it about every 15 minutes or so, to ensure even baking.

Remove from the oven and stir in the currants.  Let the granola cool completely on the baking sheet and then transfer to an airtight container.  Store the granola in the refrigerator and use within two weeks.

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