Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Bircher Muesli

While we were on vacation last week, I had the good fortune to try Bircher Muesli at a fabulous breakfast buffet. How on Earth could I have gone this long on the planet without knowing about this stuff?

Here's how Wikipedia explains it: "Muesli was invented in 1900 by Swiss doctor Maximilian Bircher-Benner for patients in his hospital. The term is a Swiss German diminutive of the German noun "Mus", a cooking term for a semi-liquid made from raw or cooked fruit that lacks an exact English equivalent, but that is related to mush, paste, compote or the French purée." Apparently the term muesli now seems to be a generic term for all kinds of dry and cooked cereals. But the original recipe is the national breakfast of Switzerland, and a quick Google search looks like it is mainstay in Australia and all over Europe. How could I have missed this?

Basically it's a cold porridge-like pudding of oat, fruit and yogurt. So creamy, so fresh, so full of healthy stuff. I can't get enough. Here's the recipe I used:

1 cup rolled oats
½ cup milk, apple juice, or freshly squeezed orange juice
½ cup yoghurt
½ Granny Smith apple, grated
1/8 cup currants
1/8 cup slivered almonds
a sprinkling of ground nutmeg
a sprinkling of ground cinnamon

seasonal fruits to serve

Method:

Combine the rolled oats, apple juice, yoghurt, apple, currants, almonds, nutmeg and cinnamon in a large bowl and stir together. Chill overnight (or for at least two hours).

To serve, stir in the fresh fruit of choice.

Yesterday I added fresh raspberries. Today it was chopped banana and strawberries. You can use plain, vanilla or flavored yogurt, and add almost anything. There are so many variations I want to try: banana walnut with a dash of maple syrup, lemon yogurt with coconut, or tropical mango papaya and pineapple, blueberries almonds and dash of almond flavoring, fresh ripe peaches!, craisins and pecans, fig and hazelnut, pear and macademia nuts. I am going to try flax meal for more health benefits -- just a tablespoon. It's endless, all the combinations that can be cooked up! So good and so good for you