3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
3/4 cup sliced nuts (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts or pecans)
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/2 tablespoon wheat germ (optional)
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup dried fruits (cranberries, cherries, apricots, dates, figs, and/or raisins)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Either butter, oil or line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large cooking pot combine the wet ingredients and put on low heat until the butter is melted.
In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients.
Once the butter is melted turn off the element and pour the dry mixture over the wet mixture and toss together, making sure all the dry ingredients are coated with the liquid. Spread onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 30 - 45 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once after 15 minutes so the mixture browns evenly. (The browner the granola gets (without burning) the crunchier the granola will be.) Be careful not to burn the dried fruit.
When you take the granola out of the oven let it sit and cool, do not mix it. The granola may be sticky when it is removed from the oven but it will become crisp and dry as it cools. Once the granola has completely cooled, store in an airtight container or plastic bag in the refrigerator. It will keep for several weeks.