When I cooked on Class Afloat I made large batches of yoghurt from scratch, it seemed more practical than having to buy and refrigerate several small containers. I could just make the yoghurt when I needed a big batch, it only takes a little bit of yoghurt to turn a giant pot of milk into tangy creamy dreamy bliss. Along with yoghurt for breakfast every Thursday I would serve some kind of baked good be it muffins, scones or cinnamon rolls but I never forgot the small details, yoghurt needs its true companion, granola.
People love the clusters in granola, there is something more satisfying about plucking out a big cluster rather than the individual oatmeal grains and popping it into your mouth. I have a favorite granola recipe that I’ve been using for years, it’s a base that can easily be changed to whatever you have on hand or altered to go with a new flavor idea. I finally figured out the secret to getting firm clusters without loads of sugar, it still has sugar because that’s what makes it tasty, but I swapped to using mostly brown sugar or honey instead of white. The secret to great clusters in not just in the oats, having part of them ground up, but in the egg whites, that’s what really binds everything together. The other note in technique is to not stir the granola while it’s baking, only give it a bit of a turn over once it comes out of the oven so it won’t stick to the pan as it cools.
Add 2 cups of oats to a food processor, blitz until you get a fine powder, remove the oat flour to a large mixing bowl.
Add 1 cup of oats to the food processor, pulse a few times until most of the oats have been broken down a little, like the look of quick oats, add to the mixing bowl.
Add the remaining 2 cups of oats into the mixing bowl along with the cinnamon, salt and chopped nuts.
To a small saucepan add the butter, brown sugar, sugar and water, bring to a boil for 1 minute, remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
Pour the hot sugar mixture over the oats and stir till thoroughly combined, then add the egg whites and stir again.
Scrape the mixture onto a large rimmed baking sheet and spread evenly across the sheet.
Bake at 300F for 45 minutes or until dark golden brown in color and mostly dry to the touch.
When you remove the granola from the oven take a large spatula and loosen it from the pan but DO NOT stir it or rassel it around. Once complexly cooled break the larger chunks up into smaller bite sized pieces and store in a zip top bag.
I’m a tall ship cook, I prefer to cook with water beneath me, no land in sight and lots of mouths to feed. I like to play with bold flavors, pushing people’s taste buds in new directions and using a recipe as a guideline, my hands are my measuring spoons. Read More about “About Me”…