I love granola. Period.
My dad was the granola maker in my family growing up. Huge vats of the stuff every week or so. Fragrant, golden chunks bathing in cold milk, or tossed on top of warm, cinnamon-applesauce, sprinkled over a fruit crisp, or simply in a baggie, eaten with grubby hands, outside in a swing.
Granola means homey-comfort, to me.
And what's so great about any recipe is the chance to do whatever you want with it. The add-in's are endless. Go as down-home or gourmet as you feel! Breakfast (lunch, dinner, brunch, linner, midnight snack, or just-because) is better for it.
1/4 cup pure pumpkin puree
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice (OR 1 t. cinnamon, 1/2 t. ginger, 1/4 t. cloves, 1/8 t. nutmeg)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup chopped pecans (OR walnuts, macadamia nuts, coconut, etc)
In a medium bowl combine the pumpkin, maple syrup, brown sugar, butter, spice, vanilla, and salt. Stir in the oats and nuts until every flake is coated.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Coat an 11-inch baking sheet with vegetable cooking spray and spread the oat mixture evenly. Bake for 45 minutes (stirring every 15 minutes) or until deep brown. Allow to cool completely on the baking sheet. Store in an airtight container. Makes approx 15 (1/4-cup) servings.