11.03.2011

Cherry-Cacao Nib Granola Plus A Coffee Giveaway

Cherry-cacao nib granola

When I came home from the Boston Brunchers' Birthday Brunch a few weekends ago, I found a copy of Salty Sweets from Harvard Common Press in my goodie bag. I quickly flipped through it, and I thought it was a nice book with gorgeous pictures. None of the recipes really jumped out at me as being new or different though. It wasn't until I actually read through the book more carefully that I realized that the recipes use different types of salt (and salt is actually carefully considered), and that's what makes them unique.

Author Christie Matheson writes:
A few years ago I realized that the most satisfying and rewarding sweets are the ones that have something going on other than straight-up sweetness. Sweet is sweet, but it can be kind of one-dimensional. But when you add a salty element to said sweet--even if the result is not an overly salty flavor--the treat in question gets seriously amped up.
As one who loves salt, I can definitely see that. I looked through the recipes again, cognizant of the use of salt, and this time a recipe for granola with dried cherries and cacao nibs caught my eye. I thought about how mouthwatering the combination of tart cherries; intense, roasted cacao nibs; sweet, toasty oats; and salt would be, and I headed into the kitchen.

The recipe calls for fine sea salt, but I only had coarse sea salt, kosher salt, Hawaiian pink sea salt, and fleur de sel on hand. Since Matheson encourages experimenting with a variety of salts, I read through her salt descriptions and decided to sub in the fleur de sel.

I also had both cacao nibs and chocolate-covered cacao nibs in the house and thought the granola would be a little more decadent if I swapped in the chocolate-covered nibs.


Chocolate-Covered Cacao Nib And Dried Cherry Granola (adapted from Salty Sweets)

Ingredients

1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups old-fashioned oats
1 teaspoon fleur de sel
1 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup chocolate-covered cacao nibs

Preparation

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the honey, maple syrup, brown sugar, butter, and vanilla in a medium-size saucepan.

Bring to a boil over medium heat, and then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often.

Mix the oats and salt in a large bowl.


Pour the hot honey mixture over the oat mixture, stir to coat, and spread evenly on prepared baking sheet.



Bake for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, and then stir in the cherries and bake for another 15 to 17 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown.



Remove granola from oven and let cool completely.

Transfer granola to a container that has a lid, and stir in cacao nibs.


Granola can be stored in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Cherry-cacao nib granola

I've been starting my mornings with a piece of quinoa toast topped with avocado slices and a cup of coffee. Then I bring a small container of this granola to work with me and munch on it for my mid-morning snack. It's nice and filling and holds me over until the tastings start at work.

And speaking of coffee... I'm doing a coffee giveaway!

One of you can win a one-pound bag of Farmhouse Blend, a reusable travel mug, and coupons for two free hot or iced coffees from Cumberland Farms.

I know what you might be thinking, coffee from a convenience store?

Farmhouse Blend has just the right blend of 100% Arabica beans, giving it a wonderful blend of aroma, body, and flavor. And it’s just $0.99 for any size, iced or hot, at any time, so quality coffee doesn't have to be a “splurge.”

And for those who don't win but still want to try Farmhouse Blend, Cumberland Farms is hosting Free Coffee Fridays on November 11, 18, and 25 at all Cumberland Farms locations, while supplies last.

Cumberland Farms has been a family-owned and operated New England business since 1939.

To enter to win, please leave a comment about your morning coffee and eating habits.

For a second entry, follow @cumberlandfarms and tweet "I want to win Farmhouse Blend from @deliciousdish and @cumberlandfarms" and leave a separate comment letting me know you tweeted.

You have until Sunday, November 6, 2011, at 11:59 pm EST to enter. Good luck!

24 comments:

  1. As someone who doesn't eat nuts, I love that your granola doesn't have them. These sounds like the chocolate nutella cherry granola bars that my mom makes but with the great addition of salt!

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  2. FunandfearlessinbeantownNovember 03, 2011 7:36 AM

    I flagged so many recipes in that cookbook! Please don't enter me in the giveaway but I've got to say that I gave my mom the coffee (since we don't brew coffee at home) and she LOVED it!

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  3. I still need to try that coffee from the swag bag. and go through those cookbooks! the granola looks excellent. my morning coffee routine begins at work with a K cup of green mountain dark blend, 1 cream, 1 sugar!

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  4. and I tweeted about the giveaway :)

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  5. quickeasycheaphealthyNovember 03, 2011 9:10 AM

    I make coffee in my French press every morning. I drink two cups from it throughout the day, although sometimes I indulge in more:)

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  6. The granola looks delicious! And I definitely enjoyed the coffee in the brunchers swag bag!

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  7. I do not know why I have not tried making my own granola - this looks fantastic!

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  8. Mmm, I love the combo of chocolate and cherry.

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  9. amy beth marantinoNovember 03, 2011 1:34 PM

    i drink a big mocha coffee, made at home, every morning.

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  10. What a great recipe!!! I love the idea of making your own granola. And I agree that chocolate and cherry is such a great combo. YUM!

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  11. I love having a cup of hot coffee with half and half every morning. I usually eat greek yogurt with granola for breakfast or cereal with milk.

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  12. I drink coffee every work day morning. It's routine. I don't love the coffee we use at work so it's basically a 50/50 mixture of skim milk and coffee but I still love it that way.

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  13. i love flavored coffee or coffee with flavored creamer. and i eat toast with peanut butter. every day.
    speaking of treats,
    PS Have you entered my dessert giveaway yet?

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  14. i need to experiment with some of the fun salts i have! they sit in my cupboard like i can't use them they're so special :-P

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  15. I've never seen so much thought go into granola...but then again, I've never seen any granola look this good!

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  16. I love your granola recipe! I need to try making some!

    I drink coffee every morning before my class or else I can not pay attention in class at all.

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  17. Oh my God…this looks amazing! I cannot wait to try this. I think you hit the nail on the head!, awesome!

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  18. That's a lot of salt to keep around, I'm impressed! But I know that as a cook and baker, it can really make quite the difference., This granola sounds totally fab!

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  19. I love my coffee with sugar and cream. It is the perfect compliment to any breakfast dish. Thanks for the incredible giveaway :)

    Renee
    fattybumpkins at yahoo dot com

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  20. I drink a cup of coffee with my oatmeal and banana every morning.

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  21. Tweeted - https://twitter.com/#!/susitravl/status/133393026855874560

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  22. Hi Amy! You won my giveaway! Please send me your mailing address, and I'll get your coffee out to you!

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  23. Thank you all for entering the giveaway. The winner is amy beth marantino. Congrats, Amy!

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