Winner takes all

So let's call a spade a spade: there's food, and then there's granola.

Before you call me a tree-hugging hippie, allow me to convince you of granola's utter hipnocity. The lovely and talented Molly Wizenberg recently posted her fourth (!) granola recipe, one adapted from this one by Nekisia Davis featured over at Melissa Clark's love child, Food52 (if you haven't heard of this brilliant and engaging initiative, get on it quick.) It's up there right now with girl hunting, salted baked goods, and foraging for wild foods as a conversation du jour.

Also, this one uses brown butter, the ultimate "I ain't messing around" ingredient if you ask me. Mashed sweet potatoes and butter -- whatever. But if suddenly you were to spike the silky concoction with a generous splash of beurre noisette, you'd witness people ooing and slobbering all over their keyboards. Cupcakes had their day, but decorate them with a browned butter icing and see how long a couple dozen of them last. Oatmeal with browned butter elevates the dish from wholesome country fare to something that might appear on the breakfast menu of a a fine dining establishment. And rolled oats coated in warm spices, amber honey, shredded coconut, torn dates, fine sea salt, and still-warm browned butter, baked until crisp, is decidedly urban (and addictive.) It's that sweet-salty thing.

Perhaps you are one of those "not into granola" people. I've heard about your type and I don't understand you. You're one of life's great mysteries, like macaroni and cheese loaf and buffalo wing-flavoured Doritos. I'll admit that I'm not so much into storebought granola. It's overpoweringly sweet for my taste. But homemade granola that fills your apartment, naturally, with the smell of cinnamon, ginger and butter? It's a beautiful thing. And quite frankly, as you wake slowly on a Tuesday morning, 6:45am, to Joni Mitchell, sunlight edging through your curtains, pouring a serving of this into a bowl and topping it with plain, whole milk yogurt is akin to being the winner, taking all.

Indian-Spiced Granola with Browned Butter & Sea Salt
Yields about 5 cups

4 cups rolled oats
1 stick of unsalted butter
2 tbsp light brown sugar
1/2 cup wild flower honey (or honey of choice)
1 tbsp fine sea salt
2 tsp garam masala
1.5 tbsp ground cinnamon
½ tbsp ground ginger
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
20 dates, torn or roughly chopped
1/2 cup sliced almonds

  1. Combine the oats with the spices and salt. Set aside.
  2. Melt the butter until it browns and smells nutty. Watch closely so it doesn’t burn. It’ll be ready once all of the milk solids have separated and floated to the sides of the pan.
  3. Carefully, combine the browned butter with the honey.
  4. Using a spatula, mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
  5. Bake at 325 degrees for forty minutes, mixing the whole lot every ten to twelve minutes. The oats should be amber coloured. Mix in the dates, coconut and almonds. Let cool and store in an airtight container (I use mason jars.) Best used within two weeks.


Anonymous said...

Your blog is fantastic, Sarah! I can't wait until I back in a country where granola is accessible so I can try some of these granola recipes. I, like you, am a granola fanatic. :)

S. said...

Thanks, Erin! That's so sweet of you to say.

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