When I moved to the West Coast, I found myself using the word "granola" to describe most people, places and things I encountered. Well, it's come time to eat my words.
Lately, whenever I have a free afternoon, I find myself making the "crunchy" treat. The whole process is so relaxing and rewarding, and it fills my apartment with the most wonderful smell. This recipe has just the right balance of salty and sweet and enough pecans to make a southern girl happy. It's perfect with Greek yogurt or in handfuls every time you walk through the kitchen.
Southern Girl Granola
Recipe adapted from Early Bird Foods' Farmhand's Choice Granola
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds, hulled
1 cup coconut chips
3/4 dried cranberries
2 cups raw pecans, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup pure maple syrup, preferably Grade A
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place oats, pumpkin seeds, cranberries, coconut, pecans, syrup, olive oil, sugar, and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl and mix until well combined. Spread granola mixture in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Transfer to oven and bake, stirring every 10 minutes, until granola is toasted, about 50 minutes. Remove granola from oven and season with salt. Makes about 7 cups. Let cool completely before serving or storing in an airtight container for up to 1 month.