Sunday, February 7, 2010

Reliable, consistent granola

I've finished a few more batches since my last post--none of them worth documenting. I am trying to get a cookie that is more like the original guerrilla AND get a reliable recipe that turns out the same every time.

The granola is still a problem for me. I made three batches with three different kinds of granolas and they turned out very different. There is just too much variety in ready-made granolas--different ingredients, different weights-per-volume, different moisture content.

To get more control over the granola, I made my own using this recipe:
3 ½ cups rolled oats
½ cup wheat germ
¼ cup unsalted sunflower seeds
¼ cup sesame seeds
½ cup chopped almonds
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup honey
¼ cup water
2 tbsp brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Stir together the oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds and almonds. In a small saucepan, mix together the oil, honey, water, brown sugar, salt and vanilla and heat over low heat just until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients, and stir until evenly coated. Spread in a thin layer on a large baking sheet. Bake for for one hour, stirring once, until lightly toasted. Cool.
Using that granola made a dry cookie, and the almonds were, to me, noticeable and wrong. If I leave out the almonds next time I make the granola, the remaining ingredients are also all in the basic guerrilla recipe. So, making granola out of them before putting them in the cookie batter is pretty much the same thing as the toast-the-dry-ingredients step I suspected from the start.

Lessons I learned in other batches:
  • Although I think wheat germ was, by itself, an ingredient in the original guerrilla, simply adding it to John's recipe makes it too dry, and adding milk and egg to overcome that just makes the taste bland.
  • I tried figs and satisfied my curiosity: I'm using raisins from now on.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Karen, I took a break after my last batch of experimental guerilla cookies with millet and a super weedy five whole grain flour. I didn't like the millet or the weedy whole grain mix flour, my wife was OK with them but they aren't going real fast.

    I am impressed with your recent work, but haven't been able to make any lately.

    Keep up the good work, and yes I agree wholeheartedly that these particular cookies need a bit of aging to reach their peak of flavor and texture. I still think wrapping in plastic wrap or bags is good for them.