Don’t get me wrong; I still adore my Spiced Fig, Pepita, and Molasses Granola of Your Dreams, my Jewelled Cranberry and Coconut Granola, and my hyperbolically-best-ever Maple Tahini Coconut Granola.
Last weekend, though, I didn’t want to make any of those granolas. I wanted something new, something vibrant, something deeply enticing that would straddle the fence between A-Bit-Like-Dessert-If-You-Squint and Conventionally-Breakfast-Appropriate.
I researched a few chocolate granola recipes online but didn’t like how they all included actual chocolate in the ingredients. I wanted something deeply chocolate-y but not too sweet, something that made use of earthy, rich cacao nibs and cocoa powder for its flavour.
I wanted oomph, not cloying. I wanted crisp and nutty, not sickly. I wanted sweetness from dried fruit and just a little brown sugar and honey (or agave/maple) to balance the cocoa’s bitter edge. What can I say? I’m a woman of the modern age. I want it all.
I very rarely make chocolate-based treats or desserts. That said, this granola has won my vote and everlasting affection. It’s so very very crispy, so very very moreish, so very very mirth-worthy. Wait, what’s that other Hamlet reference that applies here? Oh, right:
“And then it started like a guilty thing / Upon a fearful summons / Caught eating handfuls of chocolate granola at 11pm in the kitchen.”
Crazy-Good Chocolate Granola with Cacao Nibs and Almonds
- 3 cups (270g) rolled oats
- 1 cup (120g) slivered almonds
- 1/2 cup (60g) sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/4 cup honey (I used Manuka honey, ‘cause I’m fancy like that. Agave or maple work for a vegan version)
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- a few pinches of salt
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 3/4 cup dried cherries
- Preheat oven to 150°C (300°F).
- In a large bowl, mix the oats, almonds, sunflower seeds and cacao nibs together. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, sugar, honey, oil, and salt. This will make a very, very thick mixture, so don’t fear it. Embrace it.
- Mix the wet mix into the dry, stirring vigorously to make sure it’s all mixed through.
- Pour the granola mixture onto one or two baking trays, then bake for about an hour, stirring every twenty minutes. (I only had one baking tray so baked the mixture for 1 hour and 20 minutes.)
- Stir in the dried fruit and bake for five minutes more, although this part is probably completely unnecessary. You could certainly just stir in the dried fruit and be done. Your call. Also, don’t stress if the granola still seems a little bit wet straight out of the oven; as soon as it cools down, it because stupendously crispy and SO DELICIOUS CAPITALS NECESSARY.
Question Time: Do you have a favourite Shakespeare play? No, Shakespeare In Love doesn’t count. I simply cannot enjoy that movie.
Sending this through to Allergy-Friendly Lunchbox Love.