One of the coolest things about hosting wwoofers (yes, I know – this seems very random when talking muesli, bear with me!) is the feedback some give, and it always makes me chuckle at the “omg her food is so good” comments, because if only they knew how simple it is to serve these yummy meals – they’d perhaps not be quite so lyrical in their waxing 😉
Breakfast is an important meal, especially for someone who’s about to work hard for me, so I try to make it a good, satisfying and wholesome meal. I recall once in the 80’s travelling around Australia with someone who only ate junk food, so we had pizza, burgers and other things, meal after meal after meal after sodding meal..
Eventually, I couldn’t take it any longer, I walked into a cafe near our accommodation one night and begged them to steam me a plate of vegetables and bring me fresh butter and salt to go with it lol Now it’d be easier to find good cheap eats on the road, it was less simple 25-30 years ago! So I figure wwoofers, travelling on a budget may not have access to “expensive” things such as fruit and nuts, so it’s another reason I like to give them this breakfast meal.
It’s easy to make, it’s actually very economical (or can be as fancy as you want / can afford) and it’s DELICIOUS! You can even make it gluten free. Just substitute the yoghurt with coconut yoghurt. Or use coconut milk to soak the oats in and omit yoghurt of any kind.
The recipe will SEEM complicated but I assure you – it is not. It’s just done in several steps (which ultimately makes it easier, I promise!)
I’ll talk about the steps, then I’ll describe the most common “way” I make my muesli. You can make so many variations to the recipe, that you’ll better understand once you’ve finished reading this entire post.
Put 1 cup of wholegrain* rolled oats, 1/4 cup dried fruit (I use currants) and 1/3 cup coconut flakes or shreds (doesn’t matter which) into a container and cover with cold water. Seal and place in the fridge. Your breakfast “base” will be ready tomorrow. (You can use it earlier than waiting overnight, but it’s so much nicer to let the mix sit awhile)
Toast about 1/2 cup (in total) of your fave nuts and seeds. I favour pumpkin seeds, almonds, linseed and coconut thread. Store in an airtight container once cooled. Buy or make some yoghurt. Whatever flavour or use plain, up to you. I tend to use unsweetened natural yoghurt. Greek is kinda wasted in this dish, I feel.
It’s now time to create your breakfast! Muesli is best served immediately it’s had the fruit added so this is the final step before eating. And it’s so simple:
Chop up whatever fruit you like to eat.
Mix with some of the oat mixture and a generous dollop of yoghurt then serve topped with nuts.
I told you it was simple, yeah?
My fave fruits to use are: Banana, apple, pear, any berries but blueberries are great (only fresh fruit works in this dish) and grapes. I tend to cut the fruit up quite finely so you get a mix of flavours in every bite, not a chunk of apple now, and banana next, sort of thing.
The oat mix will keep for 5 days if chilled. Do not add to it, you must always make a fresh batch or you will end up with fizzy fermented muesli. Yechhh!
The reason I use currants is they’re like plump little sweet yet tart explosions through the fruit mixture, you can use anything, I’ve used apricots before – they’re good. But again: whatever you like: use it. Don’t have any? No biggie, just go plain.
So, these quantities (the oat mix and 750g yoghurt) plus 1 banana, 1 apple, 1 orange, 1 bunch of grapes and a punnet of berries – will make not just one, not two – but **FIVE large breakfasts .. As I said: it is very economical, as well as healthy, simple and delish.
You can add any fruit or top with whatever array of seeds, nuts and grains that you like. The only things I don’t think work well are sesame and peanuts. But that could be a personal preference thing.
As for ratios: I find equal parts oat mixture and fruit – and slightly less yoghurt but again: do what you prefer, it will work either way so long as you do step 1 properly. Oh I also love to squeeze citrus juice over the fruits as I cut them, just to give them a nice zing and ensure they stay super fresh.
So there you have it: Joan’s take on Bircher muesli.
*It is crucial that you do not use quick cook oats. They turn to moosh and are not at all nice.
**If making single serves, either buy small pieces of fruit or seal in a container in the fridge and use over the course of a week.