Crunchy California granola
Share your kitchen delights with this gift-in-a-jar! This flavor-packed mixture can be eaten as a breakfast cereal, as a trail-mix snack or a crunchy topping for yogurt or ice cream. Store it at room temperature in tightly sealed jars and use within a month.
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1 1/2 cups walnut halves
1 cup whole almonds, with skins
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup orange juice
1/3 cup honey, at room temperature
1/2 tsp. salt (optional)
9 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking or stone cut)
1 1/2 cups toasted pine nuts or pumpkin seeds
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped dates
1 cup dried currants
1 cup chopped dried cherries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with foil. Place walnuts and almonds on 1 sheet and toast until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. When cool enough to handle, chop nuts coarsely.
Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees. Melt butter in microwave. Whisk orange juice, honey and salt into melted butter. Spread oats in even layers over 2 lined baking sheets. Drizzle butter mixture evenly over oats. Lightly toss oats with a spatula so they are evenly coated. Toast in oven until lightly browned, about 30 minutes. Halfway through cooking time, rotate pans and lightly toss oats so they brown evenly. Cool to room temperature. Add chopped nuts, pine nuts, dates, currants and dried cherries. Toss gently to blend.
When completely cooled, oats will become crisp. Transfer to jars with tight-fitting lids.
Makes 4 quarts
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