To make a healthy gift that friends and family will devour this season, skip the fruitcake and go for granola instead. Once you've got the basic recipe down, try the tasty variations.
Photography: Krause, Johansen
Source: Body+Soul, November/December 2007
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 4 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Vegetable oil
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Combine honey, maple syrup, butter, and brown sugar in saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat; reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often.
In a large bowl, mix oats, coconut, and salt. Pour the honey mixture over the oat mixture and stir. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet and spread granola evenly. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool before transferring to airtight glass containers.
Replace 1/4 cup syrup with 1/4 cup molasses and stir 1/4 teaspoon pepper in with oats. Bake for 12 minutes, then add 1 cup total of chopped crystallized ginger and dried apple; bake 8 to 13 minutes.
Stir 1 teaspoon almond extract into the honey mixture while it's simmering. Add 1 cup slivered almonds to the oats. Bake for 12 minutes, then add 1 cup dried cherries; bake 8 to 13 minutes.