It’s impossible to express in writing how special fall is to me. Fall is not a list of adjectives or a series of temperature readings, but rather a feeling that eeks out just as the late summer air begins to crisp. Maybe it’s that I prefer cooler temperatures and my body finally feels like it can breathe, maybe it’s the coziness of putting on my favorite sweater, or maybe it’s the reminder that nature is a stronger force than I–but I’ve felt this powerful connection to fall for as long as I can remember.
It’s okay if you think I sound like a whackadoodle. It confuses me, too, as to why I feel more alive during fall than other season. But I just can’t fight that feelin,’ if you know what I mean. Neither could George Elliot:
“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
So let’s begin this year’s flight through autumn with a bit of spice perfection: Pumpkin Pie Granola.
Why is fall special to you?
Pumpkin Pie Granola
Adapted from My Baking Addiction
Makes 8-10 servings
4 cups old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup flaked, unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup honey
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup dried cranberries (optional)
In a large bowl, combine oats, pecans and coconut; set aside. In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, honey, maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice; bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla. Pour over oat mixture; stir to coat. Spread in a large shallow baking pan. Bake at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool. Add cranberries if using; store in an airtight container.