Chunky Almond Granola & Cook’s Illustrated Baking Book Giveaway!

I’m holding a lovely baking book, clutched tightly in my arms.  It has become my new favorite.  I won’t lend it, borrow it, or abuse it in any way. This book will make me a baking genius!

If you could see my extensive collection of cookbooks scattered throughout my house, you would soon realize that for me to make that statement, it must be pretty darn impressive.

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It certainly is impressive, foolproof and much more.  I receive so many nice cookbooks in the mail to review, that I rarely buy one off the shelf.  My head just about twisted off my shoulders, when I spotted this beautiful heavy, black & white book.  It seemed to stick out like a sore thumb, amidst hundreds of others calling for my attention.  It wasn’t a Cookbook, but rather a . . .

titleKT0C7561wI easily ignored the others, even though their covers were screaming with their bright flashy covers.  So, what book made me stop in my tracks you ask?

Cover

The name along speaks for itself.  Cook’s Illustrated.  If you do any baking/cooking at all, you are well aware of that name.

If you are one who believes you were skipped over, when the baking genes were handed out, this book is for you.

Cook’s Illustrated Baking Book, is for the beginning baker or the highly skilled baker.  In fact, if you don’t learn something new from this book, you simply don’t want to learn.

I must sound as if I’m writing a sponsored post, but I promise you . . . I’m not.  It really is a beautiful book.  I decided twenty pages into the book, that I couldn’t dog-ear the pages of every must make recipe.  Every page would be turned over, and I didn’t want to mess up my pretty book.  I knew immediately that the first recipe I would be making was the Almond Granola on page 98 of 518 pages.

Ohhhhhh, I’ve made it twice now. Dangerous.

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The basic recipe is so simple to make.  It’s not too sweet and it’s crunchy and it’s chunky!  I did add 1/2 cup of raw sunflower seeds, 1/4 cup of golden flax seed and 1/2 cup of pepitas as well.  I also add 1 cup of golden raisins, and a handful of dried cherries, before it went in the oven.  We like the fruit really chewy.  Keep in mind, that if you toss any fruit in before baking, it will be really chewy!  Adding the dried fruit after the granola has cooled is the norm.

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Make sure that you use pure maple syrup . . . not pancake syrup.

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Make sure you use Old Fashioned Oats . . . NOT quick cooking Oats.

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Make sure you line your baking sheet with parchment paper.

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Make sure you spread the mixture into a even layer.

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Make sure you take a metal spatula and compress the oat mixture until it’s VERY compact.

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Bake until it’s golden brown – 40 to 45 minutes.

Remember: NO STIRRING AT ALL!

Place the pan on a rack and let cool for at least ONE HOUR.

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Ohhh it’s perfectly perfect!  Chunky heavenly Granola. Break your granola into the size of chunks you desire. Add your dried fruit and anything else you desire. We like to toss in dried banana chips and sometimes even a few m&m’s if it’s going on a hike!

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Eat it for breakfast.

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Eat it for Lunch and Dinner and every time you pass by the bowl of granola. At some point you will simply have to hide it from yourself!

Chunky Almond Granola
 
Ingredients
  • ⅓ cup pure maple syrup
  • ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (opt)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 cups (10 ounces) raw almonds, chopped coarse2 cups (10 ounces) raisins or other dried fruit, chopped
Instructions
  1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk maple syrup, sugar, vanilla, and salt together in large bowl. Whisk in oil. Fold in oats and almonds until thoroughly coated.
  3. Transfer oat mixture to prepared baking sheet and spread across sheet into thin, even layer (about ⅜ inch thick). Using stiff metal spatula, compress oat mixture until very compact.
  4. Bake until lightly browned, 40 to 45 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Remove granola from oven and let cool on wire rack to room temperature, about 1 hour.
  5. Break cooled granola into pieces of desired size. Stir in dried fruit. Granola can be stored in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
  6. I also added: raw sunflower seeds, raw pepita seeds, golden flax seed
  7. …..

 

 

COOK’S ILLUSTRATED – CHUNKY ALMOND GRANOLA
via:  justgetoffyourbuttandbake.com

  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (opt)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 cups (10 ounces) raw almonds, chopped coarse2 cups (10 ounces) raisins or other dried fruit, chopped
  1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees.  Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk maple syrup, sugar, vanilla, and salt together in large bowl.  Whisk in oil. Fold in oats and almonds until thoroughly coated.
  3. Transfer oat mixture to prepared baking sheet and spread across sheet into thin, even layer (about 3/8 inch thick). Using stiff metal spatula, compress oat mixture until very compact.
  4. Bake until lightly browned, 40 to 45 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Remove granola from oven and let cool on wire rack to room temperature, about 1 hour.
  5. Break cooled granola into pieces of desired size. Stir in dried fruit.  Granola can be stored in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

I also added:  raw sunflower seeds, raw pepita seeds, golden flax seed

 

…..

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  • Kelley H. - February 8, 2014 - 3:37 pm

    Not sure where to leave the comment, it didn’t give me the option in the Rafflecopter space – it just said “I left a comment” – and I hadn’t yet. So, just in case it this is where I’m actually supposed to leave it – I would love to see some more healthy for yummy recipes. This granola looks delish and I’m going to try it. Thanks for the tip on making it chewy. One question – what type of jars are those that you have the granola in? I LOVE interesting jars and those certainly fill the bill. 😉 Thanks so much for the giveaway, it looks like a great book.ReplyCancel

  • Andrea - February 8, 2014 - 3:51 pm

    I’d like to learn how to make a better cake from scratch! Thank you, Jonna! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • NaDell - February 8, 2014 - 3:56 pm

    I want to learn how to make gnocchi.ReplyCancel

  • Lori - February 8, 2014 - 4:01 pm

    I love to bake. I would like some new recipes. My family is getting tired of the same things all the time. Thanks so much!ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer - February 8, 2014 - 4:29 pm

    I would like to learn how to make a really really good lemon meringue pie.ReplyCancel

  • Shirley - February 8, 2014 - 4:42 pm

    I just love your blog! I would love to learn how to make a great cinnamon roll!ReplyCancel

  • Kathy - February 8, 2014 - 4:45 pm

    The perfect orange chiffon cake is what I would love to know how to make from scratchReplyCancel

  • Liesel - February 8, 2014 - 6:47 pm

    I would like to learn to make a perfect pie crust.ReplyCancel

  • Tammy - February 8, 2014 - 6:50 pm

    I would love to learn more Asian /AmericanReplyCancel

  • sarah jackson - February 8, 2014 - 6:51 pm

    I would like to learn to bake bake eggless cupcakes that dont fall apartReplyCancel

  • Tiffany - February 8, 2014 - 7:00 pm

    I would like to learn some vegetarian meals.ReplyCancel

  • Brownie - February 8, 2014 - 7:38 pm

    I would love to learn how to make tall fluffy biscuits!ReplyCancel

  • Marcia S. - February 8, 2014 - 7:54 pm

    I would like to learn how to make puff pastry!ReplyCancel

  • Shauna - February 8, 2014 - 8:00 pm

    I like learning anything I can about baking – science, technique, updated recipes for old classics, etc. Thanks for all you do!ReplyCancel

  • Christy Spurlock - February 8, 2014 - 8:18 pm

    I would love to make homemade pasta. Learning about ingredients and how they work together with different results.ReplyCancel

  • Barb Langlois - February 8, 2014 - 8:30 pm

    Cook’s I llustrated is such an awesome reference. I love their magazine, i’d love to make anything from their baking book….their recipes are great. Cinnamon rolls maybe?ReplyCancel

  • Anne [A Squared] - February 8, 2014 - 9:55 pm

    I would love to learn how to make a good souffle!ReplyCancel

  • Laurel - February 8, 2014 - 10:21 pm

    I would love how to make a great pie crust.ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - February 8, 2014 - 11:07 pm

    I’d most like to learn how to bake with yeast, I always seem to mess it up.ReplyCancel

  • itzia - February 8, 2014 - 11:41 pm

    I would like to learn how to make a pieReplyCancel

  • Kim B - February 9, 2014 - 1:45 am

    I would love to learn how to make banana bread. For whatever reason, every bread I’ve tried to make has been a massive failure!ReplyCancel

  • cristy - February 9, 2014 - 3:03 am

    I want to learn to bake different types of bread.ReplyCancel

  • Beth M - February 9, 2014 - 5:02 am

    Braised lamb shanks for two!ReplyCancel

  • Doreen - February 9, 2014 - 5:27 am

    I would like to learn GOOD flaky pie crust. Thanks for the giveaway!ReplyCancel

  • Carol - February 9, 2014 - 5:40 am

    Thanks for the great giveaway, Jonna. I would love to learn how to bake the perfect cheesecake.ReplyCancel

  • Debbie - February 9, 2014 - 5:52 am

    I’d love to overcome my fear of yeast breads! Thanks for the opportunity to win this excellent resource!ReplyCancel

  • Katie - February 9, 2014 - 5:53 am

    Pie crust for me.ReplyCancel

  • Sandra DeVaux - February 9, 2014 - 6:28 am

    The granola looks amazing!!

    I would love to learn how to make bagels…multigrain specifically. The only one I have ever found I like is at Wegmans. Thanks!!

    granddaughterReplyCancel

  • Susan @ flavors by four - February 9, 2014 - 6:35 am

    I would like to learn how to bake baklava and fancy cakesReplyCancel

  • Melissa - February 9, 2014 - 6:40 am

    More baking recipes (that taste great) with ingredients that have more nutritional value, ie: whole wheat, flax, evoo, maple syrup or agave…ReplyCancel

  • Janet T - February 9, 2014 - 7:11 am

    I would like to learn how to make empanadas.ReplyCancel

  • Bonny - February 9, 2014 - 7:26 am

    Your granola looks soooo yummy! I would like to learn to make granola. Thank you for the recipe! I would love to win your little(big) black book 🙂ReplyCancel

  • D S Hall - February 9, 2014 - 7:28 am

    I’d like to learn to make scratch cakes that aren’t dry. I do fine when starting with a cake mix, but would like to do without all the additives they
    put in the cake mix for shelf stability.ReplyCancel

  • Karen M - February 9, 2014 - 7:55 am

    I would love to learn how to bake! I LOVE to cook, but baking not so much!ReplyCancel

  • Heather - February 9, 2014 - 8:18 am

    I want to learn how to make cinnamon rolls!ReplyCancel

  • Diane W - February 9, 2014 - 8:22 am

    I would love to learn how to bake with yeast. I’ve tried with varying results over the years!ReplyCancel

  • Jan R - February 9, 2014 - 8:47 am

    I Want to make macaroons…they are on my bucket list!ReplyCancel

  • Britni Barker - February 9, 2014 - 9:32 am

    I love Cook ‘s Illustrated!!!! I’d love to learn how to cook anything in the book. I really enjoy baking!ReplyCancel

  • KaySue - February 9, 2014 - 9:50 am

    I would like to learn how to make pie crust.ReplyCancel

  • kitten4772 - February 9, 2014 - 9:54 am

    Love the granola or other snack foods that are on the ‘healthy’ side. I’m still looking for good, easy, nutritional soups. Would like to learn how to make kolaches, rohliky, and poppy seed cake with a custard like frosting.ReplyCancel

  • Shelly - February 9, 2014 - 10:02 am

    I’d love to learn how to bake cinnamon rolls.ReplyCancel

  • Dawn - February 9, 2014 - 10:16 am

    I would like to learn how to make bagels from scratch.ReplyCancel

  • Phyllis - February 9, 2014 - 10:46 am

    I want to learn to bake Whole Wheat Bread that tastes great, not blandReplyCancel

  • Maria Hanrahan - February 9, 2014 - 10:51 am

    I already have this book on my wish list, after checking it out at B&N a couple times, so I’d LOVE to win it!ReplyCancel

  • Cairine - February 9, 2014 - 11:00 am

    I love scones, I would like to add to my scone collection of recipes.ReplyCancel

  • Susan - February 9, 2014 - 11:34 am

    Apple dumplingsReplyCancel

  • TaraO - February 9, 2014 - 11:36 am

    I’d like to learn how to make yeast bread.ReplyCancel

  • cherie - February 9, 2014 - 11:51 am

    I always prefer my granola chewy – getting ready for vacation but going to add this to my calendar so I remember to try it when we get back! looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Monica Lavoie - February 9, 2014 - 12:00 pm

    I am not a big baker but would love to learn how.

    Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Deb - February 9, 2014 - 12:41 pm

    I would love to learn how to make a brownie that is both sweet and salty.ReplyCancel

  • Susan L - February 9, 2014 - 12:48 pm

    I would like to learn how to make a really yummy apple pie from scratch, crust too.ReplyCancel

  • Janelle Belka - February 9, 2014 - 1:16 pm

    I would love to learn to make homemade bread!ReplyCancel

  • Jeffrey - February 9, 2014 - 1:53 pm

    I love dessert but have yet to make an acceptable pie. I steer away from them and usually make cookies, cake or brownies. I think it just takes time and practice but I usually give in after the first try and when I attempt it again I forget about the mistakes I previously made!ReplyCancel

  • Patty - February 9, 2014 - 3:05 pm

    I’d like to learn how to make good pecan rolls.ReplyCancel

  • Margot C - February 9, 2014 - 3:53 pm

    I’m a pretty good baker but a really good loaf of whole wheat bread still eludes me.ReplyCancel

  • Samantha - February 9, 2014 - 4:16 pm

    An old fashioned fudge recipe.ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Langston - February 9, 2014 - 4:18 pm

    I’m always looking for new recipes to try! Cant go wrong with this book!ReplyCancel

  • Kami - February 9, 2014 - 5:57 pm

    I want to learn how to make gnocchi. The last time was not so yummy.ReplyCancel

  • Pearse - February 9, 2014 - 6:20 pm

    Love to learn to make french macaroonsReplyCancel

  • Pat - February 9, 2014 - 6:20 pm

    Love to make many more healthy recipes like this granola!ReplyCancel

  • Lori Mlinarcik - February 9, 2014 - 6:44 pm

    I would like to learn how to make an awesome raspberry pie. Also, any other recipes with fresh and/or frozen raspberries (I’ve got raspberries in my yard.)ReplyCancel

  • barbara n - February 9, 2014 - 6:59 pm

    I would love to learn how to make Crème brûléeReplyCancel

  • Megan J - February 9, 2014 - 8:05 pm

    I would love to learn how to make different types of bread without super crunchy crusts. Of course, lots of different types of desserts wouldn’t hurt either!ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - February 9, 2014 - 8:35 pm

    Pita pockets have always been difficult for me. I’d love to learn how to do those.ReplyCancel

  • Monique - February 9, 2014 - 8:53 pm

    I would love to make a really good french onion soup or cream of mushroom 🙂

    I love your blog and this Granola looks AMAZING!!ReplyCancel

  • Patty - February 9, 2014 - 9:11 pm

    I would love to learn how to make cinnamon rolls.ReplyCancel

  • Dezi A - February 9, 2014 - 9:47 pm

    I’d love to try those cinnamon nut roll things you shared the picture of. …drooling…ReplyCancel

  • Lindsay M - February 9, 2014 - 10:16 pm

    I feel like I’m a pretty good cook, but baking is an entirely different animal! I’d love to learn how, and I love Cook’s Illustrated, so this would be great!ReplyCancel

  • Jeanne Odonnell - February 10, 2014 - 5:25 am

    I would love to learn how to make soft pretzels.ReplyCancel

  • cynthia ansel - February 10, 2014 - 5:38 am

    macaroonsReplyCancel

  • Tonya - February 10, 2014 - 6:59 am

    I want to learn how to make yeast rolls and cinnamon rolls. I have never been able to consistently get either of these right but it doesn’t stop me from trying….luv this blog btwReplyCancel

  • rachel - February 10, 2014 - 7:24 am

    Croissants! I’ve yet to attempt them.ReplyCancel

  • Chelai - February 10, 2014 - 7:43 am

    I’d love to learn to make croissants!ReplyCancel

  • Alessandra - February 10, 2014 - 9:08 am

    I would like to learn how to make puff pastry.ReplyCancel

  • Tarah - February 10, 2014 - 9:24 am

    I would love to learn how to make the perfect creme bruleeReplyCancel

  • Renee - February 10, 2014 - 10:28 am

    I love to cook, but for some reason I’ve always been afraid of baking anything that contains yeast. I would love to conquer this and make some yummy homemade cinnamon rolls!ReplyCancel

  • Chatelaine - February 10, 2014 - 11:22 am

    I need to get over my fear, and just learn how to make macarons 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Denise - February 10, 2014 - 11:56 am

    I would love to accomplish a really good whole wheat bread with lots of sprouted grains (and how to sprout grains) oatmeal, seeds, etc. I live close to you and would love to learn from you!!!ReplyCancel

  • MaryB - February 10, 2014 - 1:19 pm

    I’d love to learn to make really awesome artisan style bread.ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Roussel - February 10, 2014 - 1:47 pm

    I don’t have a particular thing I’d like to learn to make- just to improve my overall cooking skills and also to increase the nutritional value of our daily meals.ReplyCancel

  • carie stephens - February 10, 2014 - 2:22 pm

    I would love to learn how to make bread in the event of a power outage (dutch oven? over a campfire?!) Thanks!!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa Hathaway - February 10, 2014 - 2:38 pm

    I’m going to try this granola as a snack to take to work or school. I’m always on the hunt for portable snacks!ReplyCancel

  • Mary-Walker Hall - February 10, 2014 - 5:58 pm

    Easy way to poach eggs!ReplyCancel

  • Tammy Bilodeau - February 10, 2014 - 7:53 pm

    Oh I’d love a copy and this granola sounds so yummy!ReplyCancel

  • Tahne Timmons - February 11, 2014 - 3:36 am

    Wheat bread that isn’t heavy enough to use as a doorstop!ReplyCancel

  • lisa hayward - February 11, 2014 - 5:32 am

    i would like to learn how to make tiramisuReplyCancel

  • Lachelle - February 11, 2014 - 7:07 am

    I would love to learn how to make good pie crusts or cake from scratch.ReplyCancel

  • Melissa - February 11, 2014 - 8:36 am

    I love your webiste! I was born and raised in Idaho and joined the Army 4 years ago and looking at your website and pictures of the beautiful scenery brings me back! I love baking cakes and fancy deserts so anything in that shape or form would be lovely.ReplyCancel

  • Debbie Nixon - February 11, 2014 - 11:30 am

    I think I may have missed the comment section. I would love to learn to bake!!!! I guarantee my family would love me to learn to bake!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Linda - February 11, 2014 - 3:15 pm

    I love Cooks Illustrated and have been salivating over this book. I am a pretty cook baker but I would like to improve my techniques with this baking book.ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - February 11, 2014 - 4:07 pm

    I would really love to make my own bread! I have tried it and I think I need some more practice:-) Thanks for the giveaway!ReplyCancel

  • rachel - February 11, 2014 - 6:39 pm

    Anything that’s supposed to rise…I always end up with a tough lump of dough! Thanks!!ReplyCancel

  • Marilyn - February 11, 2014 - 7:42 pm

    I just love all of your post, delicious food (I’ve tried many, many of them) and beautiful pictures. Thanks so much!ReplyCancel

  • Heather - February 11, 2014 - 7:54 pm

    I love to cook and bake and I love your site. You have so many wonderful and delicious recipes. I have made so many of them and they are so comforting. I can’t think of something I want to learn at the moment. I am always trying new things and actually get teased by my family sometimes. Maybe a nice crusty baguette!ReplyCancel

  • Jan K - February 11, 2014 - 7:56 pm

    How to make cheese.ReplyCancel

  • Heather Spooner - February 11, 2014 - 8:44 pm

    I’d like to learn how to make cinnamon rolls. I love them! Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Shannon - February 11, 2014 - 8:54 pm

    I don’t care what it is, if it’s Cook’s Illustrated it will be good. And I just have a thing for cookbooks anyway. Thanks.ReplyCancel

  • Fibia - February 11, 2014 - 8:55 pm

    I would like to learn to make whole wheat soft pretzels. Thank you for the giveaway.ReplyCancel

  • Christine - July 12, 2015 - 11:37 am

    This granola is awesome! Thanks so much for sharingReplyCancel