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Mince Pie Granola

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A mince pie is a small British sweet pie traditionally served during the Christmas season.  It usually has a meat product in it but who says we can’t mix things up a bit.  The typical ingredients used in a mince pie are: raisins, sultanas, currants, shredded suet (beef or vegetarian), dark brown sugar, nutmeg, mixed spice, orange zest and juice, lemon zest and juice  and cooking apples.  In this recipe, the nuts replace the meat.  Don’t forget that you can eat this granola as a snack, served as a cereal with your favorite nut milk or even as a topping on raw ice cream!

So, what’s the difference between raisins, sultanas and currants:

  • Raisins are dried white grapes. They are dried to produce a dark, sweet fruit. The grapes used are usually Moscatel.
  • Sultanas are also dried white grapes but from seedless varieties. They are golden in color and tend to be plumper, sweeter and juicier than other raisins.  Also referred to as golden raisins in the US.
  • Currants are dried, black, seedless grapes. They are dried to produce a black, tiny shriveled – yet packed with flavor – fruit.

Ingredients:

Wet Ingredients:

  • 4 apples, chopped small (roughly 6 cups)
  • 3 cups Medjool dates, pits removed (soak if really dry for about 10 mins in the orange juice)
  • 1 cup orange juice and the zest from the skin of 1 orange
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds, soaked 2 hours or more
  • 2 cups raw almonds, soaked 4 hours or more
  • 3 cups raw pecans, soaked 2 hours or more
  • 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds, soaked 2 hours or more
  • 1 cup dried cranberries or raisins or dried apples

Preparation:

  1. Combine all the wet ingredients in the food processor and using your “S” blade, blend everything together leaving the batter a little chunky.  Pour the mixture into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Take 1/2 of the dry mixture and pulse together to a rough chop, again using the “S” blade in the food processor.  Add to the mixing bowl along with the remaining dry ingredients.   Mix well making sure everything is well coated.
  3. Place the batter on the teflex sheets that come with your dehydrator.  If you don’t have those you can use parchment paper, but don’t use wax paper because the granola will stick to it.  You can either spread the batter out flat with an offset spatula or you can drop it on the sheet in chunks which allows it to dry in clusters.   This is my favorite way since we tend to eat the granola more as a snack than as a cereal.
  4. Dehydrate at 105 degrees for about 4 hours and then flip the granola over onto the mesh screen that comes with the dehydrator.  Continue drying for about 16-20 hours or until desired dryness is reached.  I tend to like my granola more on the chewy side than the crunchy side.
  5. Once the granola is done and has cooled, store in air-tight containers.  You can keep it on the counter for walk-by munching or it can be stored in the fridge or freezer to extend the shelf life.  On the counter it should last several weeks,  if it lasts that long!

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