I've been having trouble with breakfast lately. The temperature has been heating up, and the last thing I want to start my day off with is a bowl of steaming oats. Instead, I could opt for a plate of steaming eggs. No. Or a heavy plate of pancakes. Pass. Waffles? For some reason that seems like a lot of trouble for a midweek breakfast. Clearly, my remaining option was to bake some granola.
In fact, granola is my favorite meal because it combines the best of crunchy cereal with the sticking power of oats. I still haven't perfect my recipe, but most of the formulas I've come up with have turned out tasty. For this recipe in particular, I used up the remaining pepita seeds I had and added sliced almonds and wheat germ. Since I hadn't any syrup or honey, I made a quick simple syrup with freshly squeezed orange juice and brown sugar. With the grated zest of the oranges mixed with the oats, the taste is light and citrusy and perfect for summer.
It seems that I never all the add ins I want when I make granola, or I purposely make granola when all I have are nuts and oranges. I would have liked unsweetened coconut flakes, an assortment of dried fruit, or some sort of COFFEE INGREDIENT! (I just got a brilliant idea to test out.) However, I liked how this batch turned out with the taste of the pepita seeds.
I've heard many people praise the taste of Greek yogurt, though I haven't tried it until today. Really good stuff! I loved the thicker, richer taste, though I added a bit of milk since that's how I wanted to serve it. And nothing pairs better with granola than fruit that's in season. I went with raspberries and strawberries for today's bowl.
Recipe after the jump
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Recipe by Christina Provo
2/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
5 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup pepita seeds
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/3 cup wheat germ
1 tsp cinnamon
grated zest of two oranges
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
- Preheat oven to 325° and spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray; set aside. In a small saucepan, bring orange juice and brown sugar to a boil. Boil for 1 minute; remove from heat and let cool.
- Mix together everything from the oats to the salt in a large bowl, making sure the ingredients are well distributed. Stir in the orange juice syrup and the vegetable oil and toss until the oats are thoroughly coated. Spread evenly onto baking sheet.
- Bake granola for a total of 45-55 minutes, stirring every 10-15 minutes. You're looking for an even golden tone and the oats should no longer feel wet. Remove from the oven and let granola cool on baking sheet to room temperature. Place in a container.
Can be stored, covered, for 1 week