Like so many of us in the UK my introduction to muesli many years ago was a pack of Alpen and a carton of milk: Mmm, yummy not. I just could not figure out why anyone would want to eat a ‘floury’ sloppy largely tasteless mess. It was a case of why not just put a nosebag over my head.
Over the years I tinkered with it using yoghurt instead of milk which just resulted in a less sloppy but drier and stickier mess. I tried adding fruit, seeds, coconut and I tried different brands but to no avail; I just could not find the love.
At various points people recommended making it ‘properly’ as the Swiss do using grated apple and making it up the night before. By this time my resistance levels were high, and my opinion that it was only really fit for horses fairly entrenched. Quite an odd stance for a chef’s daughter and someone who has always regarded themselves as open to trying many foods and working with ingredients to create tasty dishes.
Lo I have had an epiphany! Not surprisingly during a recent trip to Switzerland. With an early start required for a cycling trip our lovely host prepared a quick breakfast for us: muesli. What a revelation! It not only looked tasty but it tasted amazing. I asked my friends what the secret was. A good base, yoghurt, grated apple, chia seeds, a variety of additional fruits, milk to taste/as required: simple.
Eyes well and truly opened I was off to the cereal shelves on my next trip to the supermarket. Muesli mix acquired I set to making my first batch.
- Muesli base
- A small sprinkling of chia seeds
- Grated Apple
- Chopped dates
- Kiwi fruit
Blueberries and Raspberries (added fresh in the morning).
I added a little extra yoghurt and milk in the morning also. It was a good result met by approval from Alasdair also.
Needless to say it has become our new favourite breakfast eaten several mornings a week. The fruit additions vary a bit and I have been playing around with the recipe. The additional of some chopped fresh ginger adds a zing and freshness which I really like. I have also most recently experimented successfully with adding a very small quantity of fine chopped cocoa nibs.
The choice of base does make quite a difference especially to the texture and I have settled on a couple that work well for us: Dorset Cereals simple muesli and a Bircher Original base mix. Dorset has just added a new Bircher muesli mix to their range (not yet sampled).
I am a convert and like so many converts I have become almost evangelical on the matter. It is such a good start to the day with slow release low GI carbs, protein calcium and plenty of vitamins and minerals. It takes 10 minutes to make up the night before and then no time at all to put some in a tub to be eaten when I get into the office. Unlike porridge it sustains me for longer, but that probably has something to do with the chia seeds. lt is my new superfood!
Though not everyone is a fan. My daughter describes it as ‘cold, fruity porridge’ so not a convert.