¾ cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup canola oil
1 tablespoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt or 1½ teaspoons fine salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
8½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
¼ cup ground flaxseed
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup blanched sliced almonds
½ cup unsweetened coconut
1 cup dried cherries
1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Have on hand 2 rimmed baking sheets and 2 cooling racks.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, 1¼ cups of water, the oil, salt, and vanilla. Set over medium-low heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.
3. In an extra-large bowl, combine the oats, cinnamon, flaxseed, wheat germ, almonds and coconut. Pour the sugar mixture over the oat mixture and toss until coated.
4. Spread the granola on the baking sheets. Bake for 20 minutes. Stir the granola and rotate the sheets, front to back and top to bottom. Continue cooking for 20 minutes more or until the granola is golden brown. Set the sheets on wire racks to cool. Sprinkle with the cherries and toss the mixture again. Store in plastic containers. Makes about 12 cups. –Jill Santopietro for The Boston Globe.