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Granola Two Ways

By Danya Weiner

What is there to update when it comes to granola? I’m sure everyone has their own special recipe for homemade granola. Sometimes, when I’m on a healthy kick, I make a large batch of homemade granola, and it’s almost always finished within a few days.

The first time I made granola I totally burnt it. The second time I totally burnt the raisins, and I learning that they should be added only after baking. The third time I got it just right, after learning that you have to be on oven-watch, because it has the tendency to burn in an instant.

During the Sugat competition I did some hefty online research on Arab cuisine. I came upon a blog, “Taste of Beirut”, which has tons of authentic Lebanese recipes, and some recipes which bring together the Arab cuisine with that of the West.

A Lebanese granola recipe caught my attention and I decided to try it. The combination of tahini and silan (date honey) is definitely not new, but to use it as the “sauce” on oats, mixed with nuts and baked together, yields granola which is hard to stop eating.

The second recipe was conceived after all of my attempts with the tahini and silan granola, and stems from my love of rose water. The “sauce” of this granola consists of butter/oil and honey mixed with a few drops of rose water, giving it a deliciously lovely aroma.

I tried to have a competition between them, to see which one would make it into the blog. Both neck and neck, the tahini and silan had a slight lead, but only because some people aren’t such a fan of rose water. In the end, I decided to share both of the recipes.

With the upcoming holiday of Purim, it is customary to make “Mishluach Manot”, a sort of bag of goodies, generally sweets to give to loved ones.  This granola works as an innovative “Mishloach Manot”, that I’m sure your loved ones would be delighted to receive this Purim.

Enjoy!

Homemade Granola

Feel free to play around with the ingredients and amounts, according to your own tastes. This is one of those recipes that doesn’t have to be followed to the tee.

Raw tahini, silan and rose water can all be found at Middle-Eastern supermarkets.

Ingredients for 4 cups:

3 cups old fashioned rolled oats

1 cup assortment of unroasted nuts (such as almonds, pistachios, walnuts, etc.)

⅓ cup unroasted sunflower seeds

⅓ cup unroasted pumpkin seeds

3 tablespoons unroasted shredded coconut

3 tablespoons poppy seeds

½ cup raisins

For the tehini and silan granola:

¾ cup silan

½ cup raw tahini

For the honey and rose water granola:

1 stick (4 oz.) butter, melted

¾ cup honey

4-5 drops of rose extract or ½ cup rose water

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 300ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients, excluding the raisins.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the “wet” ingredients.
  4. Mix the dry ingredients together with the wet ingredients and stir until the oats are well coated and all ingredients are combined.
  5. Pour out the mixture evenly onto the baking sheet, in a single layer. Bake for 30 minutes until just golden. Turn the baking sheet around once during baking, and mix ingredients.
  6. Allow to cool completely and then add the raisins. Keep in an airtight container at room temperature.