The pros and cons of March are an oft debated topic in our household, and I’d say for good reason. The days are a little warmer, to the point that some – many of them are inviting enough to head out sans layers, overcoat, hat and gloves. Outdoor rides may be accomplished without neoprene booties (or in my case, may be accomplished at all) and of course we have Daylight Savings. On the flip side, the later sunset can trick us into going glove-less too early, and those teaser days can be followed by spells of Wintry Mix or outright blizzards. Plus, there are no official holidays in March. For some of us, March marks a turning point. For others, it’s a fickle tease that drags on. Case in point – this Thursday is approaching lovely, last Thursday we had a snowstorm (which was actually quite pretty).
Regardless, even one or two comfortable days are enough to get anyone excited for more time outdoors and generally a little more activity. Which is why I wanted to recreate a heartier granola I tried this year. After some testing and tweaking, I think it’s just right for regular consumption. I swapped out the butter for olive oil and reduced the sugar by removing the refined sugar. My favorite part about it are the hazelnuts! I it will get you a little further down the trail than Good Morning Granola, due to the higher overall nut content. It’s also less savory than the Good Morning version.
Spring Training Granola
Hands-On Time: 45 minutes
Kitchen Equipment: Large mixing bowl or stand mixer, measuring cups and spoons, sharp knife and cutting board, rubber spatula, medium saucepan, two large baking sheets, parchment paper, cooling racks.
- 5 Cups Rolled Oats
- 1/2 Cup Raw Almonds, Coarsely Chopped
- 1/2 Cup Walnuts, Coarsely Chopped
- 1/2 Cup Hazelnuts, Skins Removed, Coarsely Chopped
- 1/2 Cup Green Pumpkin Seeds
- 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
- 1/2 Cup Wheat Germ
- 1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1/2 Cup Honey
- 1/4 Cup Orange Juice
- 1 Tbsp Cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp Vanilla
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1 Tbsp Water
- Preheat the oven to 325 Degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Set the olive oil, maple syrup, honey, orange juice, cinnamon, vanilla, salt & water together in a medium sized sauce pan over low heat.
- Add the ingredients from the rolled oats – wheat germ to a large mixing bowl. Stir to throughly incorporate.
- Remove the liquid mixture from heat once it start to bubble, whisk throughly, and pour over the dry mixture.
- Stir very throughly to completely coat all of the dry ingredients.
- Spread the mix evenly over the lined baking sheets, no more than 3/4 of an inch thick.
- Bake at 325 F for 10 minutes, then, remove baking sheets and stir granola to expose uncooked portions. Repeat baking for 10 minutes, stirring again. Repeat until golden brown.
- When baked to your liking, set baking sheets on cooling racks and allow to cool completely. The granola will become more crunchy as it cools.
- Store in an airtight container for up to three weeks.
This granola is great with plain Greek yogurt and the two make a great canvas for add-ins. So far I’m pushing strawberry season!
Note: Recipe is adapted from the granola served at the Hotel Jerome, in Aspen, CO.