Red Cherry Granola Ladoo

“Red cherry red

Hanging on a tree,
Tempting and luscious
You are to me.
I pluck one, then two
Then greed steps in,
A pail full of pretty
Sheepishly reveal my sin.
Devouring my winnings
The pile of pits does rise,
I should leave some to later
As a belated prize.
Finally I’ve had
Enough for the week,
So I chop and bake them
Into a breakfast treat.
Now these delightful balls
On my pantry do smile,
A pound of cherries a day
And life is oh-so fine..”

Why should we use dried fruits for desserts, when the fresh ones are more decadent, healhty and in abundance during the summer! Fresh cherries are packed with anti-oxidants, and add a subtle tartness to otherwise sweet granola. And every granola bar does not need to be angular. Here is a circular take on a chewy moist fresh cherry granola...breakfast at home could not be yummier. 
What's more, you can crumble these up and serve as a topping to ice cream or cake. Dessert with added fibre - now what could be better ;)

Tempted yet? Read on for the recipe...

2 cups rolled oats
¾ cup dry shredded coconut
2 tablespoons fine brown sugar (add more if you like yours sweeter)
2 tablespoons honey
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup chopped almonds
¼ cup raisins
2 cups fresh cherries, pitted and chopped
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons water
A pinch of salt

Pre heat the oven to 350F. Butter a baking dish and keep aside.

Mix the oats, coconut and almonds and toast in the oven for 10 minutes, till lightly brown.

Heat the butter, sugar, honey and maple syrup in a pot, till the butter melts and the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Add to the oats mixture, along with the raisins, fresh cherries, water and salt. Mix well and smash some of the cherries a bit. Transfer to the baking dish and press down using your hands so the mixture is loosely packed in the dish. (use a plastic packet on your hands while pressing so the mixture doesn’t stick).

Bake for 20-25 minutes, till the edges are beginning to brown. The centre should still feel soft and moist. Remove from the oven and once at room temperature, scoop out and shape into rounds. The moist cherries and maple syrup help hold them together. Refrigerate to store. 

Check my EVENTS page to see how you can taste one of my creations!