Crunchy Pecan, Pear and Ginger Granola
This is a warming and cosy dehydrated granola for colder mornings. The crunch in it is fabulous and once you start eating it, you may never want to stop.
It is delicious for breakfast with almond milk and also with a handful of berries thrown on top. Try it with fresh blackberries or blueberries and a spoonful of coconut yoghurt. Maybe this is the recipe for you if you have been harbouring a dehydrator for some time and you haven’t yet had the courage to use it. (You know who you are). Or if you have one and haven’t got much use out of it yet.
Making your own granola is one of the first activities on the Diploma in Raw Chef Mastery. I provide a granola template and show participants how to create different flavours and textures by using a variety of different nuts, seeds, fruit and natural sugars. It's an adaptable template and participants eagerly make different varieties for all manner of occasions. Some even decide to add their creation to their range to sell. There is easily enough to enjoy throughout the week for breakfast, snacks and with coconut yoghurt.
Pecans have an earthy sweetness and is the perfect pairing for maple syrup. I must be hankering for my time in the US again, although I must admit that I didn’t see any pecan trees or maples for that matter. I was tempted by a Statue of Liberty shaped bottle of maple syrup whilst working at The Gothic in Maine, but I was worried about getting it home in one piece. Whatever shaped bottle your maple is poured from, I hope you greet this granola with as much enthusiasm in the mornings as I do.
Crunchy Pecan, Pear and Ginger Granola Recipe
120g (1 cup) pecans, soaked for four hours
100g (½ cup) buckwheat, soaked and sprouted
30ml (2 tablespoons) orange juice
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons ground ginger
Pinch ground cloves
1 tablespoon orange zest
185ml (¾ cup) maple syrup
If using dehydrator method
70g (½ cup) raisins, soaked for 20 minutes
2 ripe pears, roughly chopped
If using oven method
70g (½ cup) raisins
50g (1 cup) dried pears, chopped
PRO CHEF TIP: If you don’t have teflex to fit the dehydrator you have then use a piece of baking parchment instead.
Roughly chop the pecans. Transfer to a bowl and combine with the remaining ingredients. Spread the mixture onto a Teflex sheet. Dehydrate at 145 F for one hour and then turn the dehydrator down to 115 F and dehydrate for a further 12 hours. Then remove the granola from the teflex sheet and break the granola up into chunks. Place it directly on the mesh screen and continue to dehydrate until crunchy (a further 12 – 24 hours). Allow to cool and store in an air tight container.
Roughly chop the pecans. Transfer to a bowl and combine with the remaining ingredients except the raisins and dried pears. Spread the mixture onto a shallow baking tin greased with a little coconut oil. Bake the mixture in the oven on a low setting such as 110C/gas 1-2 for 10 minutes. Watch them like a hawk to ensure that they don’t burn as a few seconds either way can result in disaster. Remove the tray from the oven, add the raisins and pears and return to the oven to bake for a further 10 minutes until crispy. Allow to cool and store in an air tight container.