Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Chocolate Caramel Toffee Granola

This is just a delicious recipe with a fairly low sugar content (according to the on-line calculator I use, 1/2 cup serving has 9 gms sugar). The Panela, molasses and butter produce the toffee flavor that goes so well with the dark chocolate chunks. Panela, as I have indicated before, is an unrefined Colombian brown sugar that is produced during the stage of sugar production. It is a caramel flavored sugar, and is a little challenging to use in cooking. I prefer it to brown sugar because of its more complex taste. 

I bake the granola longer than most other recipes because I want it to be completely dry. It lasts longer that way.

Dry ingredients
4 cups rolled oats
1 cup Scottish Oatmeal
1 cup Flax meal
2 cups puffed Millet (or puffed wheat, Kamut, rice)
½ cup toasted sesame seeds
1 cup sliced almonds
½ cup shelled pumpkin seeds
½ cup shelled sunflower seeds
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
¾ teaspoon salt
Wet ingredients
¼ cup butter
¼ cup coconut oil
½ cup water
½ cup Panela or light brown sugar
¼ cup honey
¼ cup molasses

½ cup dark chocolate chunks
½ cup chopped, dried sour cherries.
1.      Mix together all the dry ingredients in a large bowl
2.      Add the Panela to the water and bring to a boil. Simmer until a syrup starts to form (about 225 degrees Fahrenheit with a candy thermometer)
3.      Add the butter, honey, coconut oil and molasses to the sugar syrup, and bring all to a boil. The mixture will be quite frothy and smell like toffee or butterscotch.
4.      Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients, and mix thoroughly until all the ingredients are coated with the toffee mixture
1.      Pour out on to a large cookie sheet that has been lined generously with parchment paper so that there is overhang of paper on all sides. Spread the granola mixture evenly and put in oven set at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
1.      Bake for 20 minutes, and remove from oven. Turn the granola over using a spatula to expose new areas to the heat. Decrease the oven temperature to 250 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another hour, turning the mixture over every 20-30 minutes. Continue baking until the granola has dried out (dry to touch) and is a nice brown color (about 1:45-2:00 hours). The drier the granola, the crunchier it will be, and the longer the shelf life in an airtight container.
1.      When done, turn off oven and leave granola to cool in the oven with the door closed. When the oven has cooled down, remove from oven and allow to cool completely. When cool, add dark chocolate and sour cherries. Mix well, and store in an airtight container. This recipe does not make granola with clusters.

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