I haven’t made an enormous batch of granola for awhile. I had been missing it. Not so much the jarful on the shelf as the panful on the stove, nibbled from by the small handful over the course of the day.
And then I was reading up on turmeric, that brilliant yellow powder that gives curry blends its colour and which appears to be a thing these days – another ingredient people are beginning to recognize for its nutritional prowess and find new uses for – and it occurred to me it would be a good addition to my usual granola. In its powdered form, it’s easy to work with – although fresh turmeric, if you haven’t seen it, looks a lot like ginger – it’s a rhizome; in the same family, but slightly smaller and with brilliant orange flesh once you scrape away the ultra-thin skin – much like an intense carrot. It’s not as sinewy as ginger, and so easy to grate or chop into curries or soup or simmer into tea. Turmeric tea – made with fresh turmeric or a paste of honey and the powdered kind, stirred into warm milk or hot water with lemon and a grinding of black pepper that supposedly aids in its absorption – has been used for centuries in cultures around the world to aid all sorts of ailments. Nowadays it populates Pinterest with such titles as MORNING LEMON DETOX.
But. Back to the granola. With a relatively benign, earthy flavour, turmeric did very well paired with cinnamon and tossed with oats, roughly chopped nuts, coconut, sesame seeds, brown sugar and honey, with a handful of chewy dried cherries stirred in once it came out of the oven. It cools into crisp, almost glossy clumps, and is divine spooned over coconut yogurt.