I almost always regret ordering granola when out at breakfast. It always seems overly sweet and excessively crunchy, or disappointingly damp and chewy. So I couldn't resist trying to create something that avoids these pitfalls. This is by no means a classic granola – the puffed rice gives it a lighter texture, and by limiting the sweetening to maple syrup, it avoids the sugariness of most granolas.
100g puffed rice
100g pecans, roughly chopped
50g sunflower seeds
30g sesame seeds
¼ tsp salt
zest of 1 orange
2 tsp coriander seeds, lightly crushed* (optional)
100ml maple syrup
2 tbsp light olive oil (or melted coconut oil)
150g dried fruit, roughly chopped (blueberries, dates or apricots are great)
1. Preheat the oven to 160C fan-forced (175C conventional) and line a large oven tray with baking paper.
2. Place all the ingredients except the maple syrup, olive oil and dried fruit in a large bowl and toss gently to combine.
3. Whisk the maple syrup and olive (or coconut) oil together and pour over the dry ingredients. Toss gently and thoroughly to combine, then spread the mix evenly on the prepared oven tray – it should be somewhat packed in to avoid burning, but not so much that they don't toast evenly (you may need to use two trays).
4. Place in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, stirring once or twice while it bakes. If using two trays, swap around the positions so they cook evenly. The granola is ready when it turns a shade darker, and is dry and crisp when cooled – take out a bit to test during the latter part of the cooking time, and bake a little longer if necessary.
5. Allow the granola to cool completely on the tray, then add the dried fruit and toss to combine. Transfer to an airtight container. It will keep for about two weeks.
*Note: With the coriander seeds, it makes an uncommonly good dried snack; leave them out if it doesn't appeal for your morning cereal with milk, though I urge you to try it.