Dark Chocolate Raspberry Granola

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I hate pedestrian crosswalks.

Not the ones you can cross by your own free will, but those that require you to press a button.

I just…can’t.

When I look at it, I see the man who didn’t wash his hands, the child who just wiped their nose, or the woman who picked up after her dog.

I see a germ here,

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here,

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and here.

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And then exponentially increased because we all know there’s an epidemic of gross going on down there.

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So I adapt.

I cover my hand with my shirtsleeve. Sometimes I use my purse. I’ve even used my hip to press that damn button.

And yet.

If I’m at party, and there are communal snacks, I’m ok with it.

Hands diving into a bag of chips? No big.

Only want half of that cookie? That’s cool, break it in half and we’ll share.

Grab a handful of granola? Just make sure you have it with some coconut yogurt too.

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Just don’t ask me to hit the crosswalk button on our walk home.

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This decadent granola has a wonderful crunch from the toasted almonds and clusters of oats, pumpkin seeds and coconut; all bound together by agave. It’s only a little sweet, with just a bit of brightness from the dried raspberries.

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Adapted from Have Cake, Will Travel

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Makes About 3 Cups

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Equipment

A small mixing bowl

A large mixing bowl

A whisk

A (scraping) spatula

A rimmed cookie sheet (I line mine with parchment paper for easy clean up)

A (flipping) spatula

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Ingredients

Wet

Quarter cup of agave syrup (you could use maple syrup)

1 tablespoon of mild tasting olive oil

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Dry

1 cup of old fashioned oats

Quarter cup of whole wheat pastry flour (you could use all purpose)

Quarter cup of unsweetened, shredded coconut

Half cup of unsalted almonds (or nut of your choice. Those are just my favorite.)

Quarter cup of unsalted pumpkin seeds

Quarter teaspoon of fine sea salt

One third of a cup of dark chocolate mini chips (you could use any chocolate of your choice, but chopping them will make them melt faster/easier if they are not mini chips)

1 cup of dried raspberries (if you can’t find these at your grocer, you could use dried cranberries or chopped dried cherries)

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Place your oven rack to the middle position of your oven.  Preheat your oven to 350F.

Pour the light agave, oil and vanilla extract into your small mixing bowl.  Whisk the ingredients together till well combined. Set aside.

Add the oats, flour, coconut, nuts, seeds and salt to your large mixing bowl. Stir the ingredients together till well combined.  (You can use your whisk again after a good clean, or your spatula.)

Pour the wet ingredients onto the dry.  Fold the ingredients until they’re well coated.

Pour the mixture onto your cookie sheet and spread it out evenly with the back of your spatula.

Bake the granola for ten minutes.

After ten minutes, remove the granola from the oven and flip over the granola in parts (with the flipping spatula) so that the browned side is face up.  Bake the granola for another ten minutes, or until the granola is golden brown.  (Note: the granola browns quite quickly the second time in the oven, so keep an eye on it towards the seven to eight minute marker.)

Remove the granola from the oven.  Working quickly, add the granola back to the large mixing bowl.  Add the mini chips and dried raspberries to the bowl, and fold them in so that the chocolate melts/coat the granola.

Allow the granola to cool to room temperature (leave on parchment paper) prior to eating/storage.