I know what you’re thinking—it’s spring, why are you posting a granola recipe? But hey, granola really knows no season—it’s a year-round staple! Plus, a Springtime Slow Cooker Granola just sounded good to me this week, when I’m try to get back to more sane, non-Easter-y eating.
I wanted a granola with more of a “springy” feel, so I went for dried apricots instead of raisins and swapped the usual honey for a drizzle of maple syrup, which you probably know is made in the springtime. (If you like maple syrup, check out this Maple Syrup Egg Custard recipe I posted last year.)
I love to just snack on this granola—it’s lightly sweet and full of wonderful textures and flavor—so satisfying! But of course, it’s equally tasty over yogurt or with milk (heck, I won’t tell if you sprinkle it over ice cream either).
Now, about the amaranth. I’ve cooked with this gluten-free grain before, but I’ve never popped it. So, in order to not mess it up, I turned to YouTube (where else?) and watched a couple of quick video tutorials to learn the tricks to it. I can sum most of it up in these messages: make sure pan is really hot, keep the amaranth moving and remove it from the heat AS SOON AS THE POPPING SLOWS (not after it has stopped, at which point some of the amaranth may already be burning—yes, it goes that fast). Some of the videos are entertaining because they leave the cover off the pan so viewers can see what’s happening (but in reality, it helps to cover the pan with a lid—less clean up that way). I tried to describe the amaranth popping process accurately in the recipe, but if you want to see a demo, just search “popping amaranth” on YouTube and check it out—there are many short instructional videos on the topic.