This delicious recipe is based on my friend Nettie’s original creation. Not only is Nettie a fabulous cook and host, but she is an especially amazing baker. We’ve been raving about her baking and urging her to do more of it for years now. And I must say, I, among others are pleased to see that she has recently re-embraced that thought of starting up her blog, the Pecan Street Kitchen (one of a few) so that she can share with friends and fans alike her amazing creations.
This is one of the recipes that I am particularly fond of. Being me and not being able to keep well enough alone, I made some minor adjustments – quite teeny ones to suit my taste.
The original recipe calls for vanilla extract or vanilla sugar, but since I prefer to use pure vanilla powder (or the seeds from a vanilla bean) in my recipes, I swapped this out. Pure vanilla powder is my personal favorite as it is so convenient. It’s made from dried and powdered vanilla beans and has same distinctive vanilla flavor as an extract. Plus it doesn’t contain any sugar or alcohol and it dissolves quickly in either hot or cold liquids.
Vanilla extracts vary from brand to brand. You can use 1 teaspoon of a superior quality vanilla extract as a substitution for one vanilla bean, but for some extracts you may need to use up to three teaspoons to achieve the same flavor. When using powder as a substitute, use 2 teaspoons vanilla powder instead of one vanilla bean.
Click to enlarge:
Orange Almond Granola
Yield: Fills two 1 liter glass jars
Inspired by Nettie’s recipe on Pecan Street Kitchen
4-6 cups rolled oats, regular (old fashioned) (500-750 g)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (alternatively sunflower seed oil or some other kind of vegetable oil) (125 ml)
1/2 cup maple syrup (can be substituted with honey or brown sugar) (125 ml)
2 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla powder
2 tablespoons orange marmalade (I used organic blood orange marmalade)
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1-2 teaspoons sea salt (optional)
finely chopped zest from 2 organic oranges
1/2 cup slivered almonds (50 g)
1/2 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped (50 g)
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (50 g) (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 325°F / 160°C.
2. In a large bowl, add 4 cups of oats and set aside.
3. In a saucepan, heat the oil, maple syrup, vanilla powder, marmalade, cinnamon, salt, and orange zest over medium heat. Once everything is thoroughly melted together, pour the liquid mixture over the oats, stir and keep adding oats until all oats are coated and moist. Stir in the sliced almonds (and walnuts if using).
TIP: You can vary the ratio of oil to syrup, depending on how sweet you want it to be. Also, the more oats, probably the more healthy it will be, and the more oil, generally the tastier it will turn out. If you’re not concerned about saturated fats, using half butter and half oil – this will make it even yummier!
4. Spread the mixture out about 1.5 cm thick on a cookie sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until it starts to turn golden. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool in the tray.
5. Once cooled, mix in the chopped cranberries.
6. Serve with yogurt or milk and fresh fruit.
7. Store granola in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.