Cherry Almond Crunch Granola
8 cups rolled oats (regular - not the quick cooking kind)
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup raw unsalted sliced almonds
1/4 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh orange juice
1 cup agave
1 tablespoon ginger spread
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 cups dried cherries (or cranberries - or a mix of both)
1/2 cup unsweetened grated coconut
1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Combine 1st 7 ingredients (through salt) in a large mixing bowl. Stir to mix, and set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine the orange juice, agave, ginger spread, and oil. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and almond extract, and the orange zest. Carefully pour over the dry oat mixture. Stir well, making sure all dry ingredients are coated well.
3. Spray a large cookie sheet (or 2 medium-sized ones) with cooking spray. Pour granola mixture onto the sheet(s), making sure it is spread in an even layer. Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden brown, stirring mixture halfway through cooking. (If you are using two sheets - one on a top oven rack & one on a lower rack - make sure you also switch positions of the sheets. Move the sheet on the upper rack to the lower rack and vice-versa.)
4. Remove from oven when done and let cool. If you have a wire rack to put the cookie sheets on, it will help with cooling. When cool, pour granola into a large mixing bowl and stir in the cherries & coconut. Store granola in a airtight container. Serve with soy yogurt or soy milk (or a mix of both!).
Source of recipe: I modified a recipe given to me by a co-worker to make it healthier & vegan.