Philacatessen | Sharon’s Granola

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granola
Sharon’s granola (Photo by Keri White)

In general, I’m not a huge consumer of granola. I always saw it as a lot of calories for something that resembled birdseed.

Until last weekend.

We visited Boston and stayed with my husband’s cousin Sharon. Thirty years ago, Sharon’s mother, Aunt Sarah, z’l, taught me how to make matzah balls and is remembered throughout the family as an amazing Jewish cook and hostess. Sharon is certainly following in her mama’s footsteps.

The first morning we arrived, she offered us breakfast, which included fresh berries, yogurt and homemade granola. I took a scoop of the granola to be polite, and, quickly went back for seconds, or maybe thirds. Polite be damned.

It was crispy and filled with a variety of nuts, which added crunch and texture and a symphony of flavors. Oh, and lots of healthy protein. It had just enough sweetness to be delicious, but not so much that breakfast felt like a sugar rush. By Sunday, we had just about killed the entire jar, and I was compelled to request the recipe.

Here it is:

Sharon’s Granola

Makes about 8 cups

This can be varied depending on what type of nuts you have, or prefer, or whether you like cinnamon — or cloves — or wish to add flaxseed and chia, or dried cherries or craisins over raisins.

It is wonderful, as we had it as a cereal with milk or yogurt for breakfast, addictive as a munchy snack any time of day and spectacular sprinkled over vanilla ice cream.

  • 5 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 4 cups assorted unsalted nuts: walnuts, pecans, cashews, almonds, pistachios, etc.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¾ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup raisins

Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment.

In a large bowl, mix the oats, nuts, coconut and spices.

In a glass measuring cup, mix the maple syrup, water and vanilla, and pour it over the oat mixture, tossing to coat.

Pour the mixture onto a prepared baking sheet and spread it into a thin layer. Bake for about 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to ensure even cooking.

Cool completely, add the raisins and store it in an airtight container.

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