One of the highlights of each month (and, let’s be honest, my life) since last March–when I pretended to be an expert on making seitan, despite having only made it once before– has been teaching cooking classes at our local Whole Foods.
My last (and latest) class was breakfast-themed, and I had the most difficult time deciding what to make.
Breakfast? I could teach a week–heck, a MONTH–of classes on the subject.
Should I finally reveal my giant pancake recipe? Should I make TVP Sausage Crumbles? And haven’t I been longing to recreate the peppery potatoes on the menu of local breakfast hotspot, Bluegrass Grill & Bakery? Or maybe I should make smoothies, now that I actually ‘get’ the obsession with them?
Eventually, I decided to roll(ed oats)with another current fixation:
I should probably blame Mr. Muesli Fusion for this fascination, but I have been eating muesli like I’m on a mission.*
*A mission for what, I don’t know.
Because I’m a giant nerd, I decided to turn the whole class into a history lesson, calling it “Muesli and Milk” and tracing the Scandinavian tradition of muesli through to the modern blogging trend of overnight oats.
Although I did spend time creating a cashew milk waterfall in the middle of the cafe…
…and sharing my recipe for extra thick vegan overnight oats…
…the major focus of the class was muesli.^
^Totally one of those words that starts to sound SUPER weird the more you say it…
To quote myself from the recipe handouts I made for my class:*
“A now-traditional Swiss breakfast, muesli (or bircher müesli) developed by physician Dr. Bircher-Benner for his hospital patients at the turn of the (20th) century, as a means to incorporate more healthy foods into their diets (in an easy to digest form). The “original recipe” included a higher proportion of fruits to grains than the packaged varieties sold today.
Muesli is the perfect combination between cereal and cooked oatmeal, and can either be soaked in milk, yogurt, or some mix of the two for just a few minutes to soften the grains (and dried fruit) or overnight to become much more porridge or pudding-like. [Using quick-cooking oats allows for a shorter 'soak' time, but regular or old-fashioned oats provide more texture.]“
…and dates. There must always be dates.*
The Smart Kitchen’s Muesli
- 1 c. quick oats
- 1 c. old fashioned oats
- 3/4 c. crisp brown rice cereal
- 1/4 c. rye flakes
- 1/4 c. wheat, rice, or quinoa flakes
- 1/4 c. sliced almonds
- 1/4 c. hazelnuts, chopped
- 1/4 c. sunflower seeds
- 2 Tbsp. ground flax seed
- 2 Tbsp. oat or wheat bran
- 1/4 c. dried date pieces
- 1/4 c. dried apricots, chopped
- 1/4 c. dried figs, chopped
*You may substitute equivalent amounts of other nuts, seeds, or dried fruits to your liking.
- Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
- Stir well to combine.
- Store muesli in an airtight container.
To Serve: Cover with milk (or yogurt) and allow to soak 5-10 minutes to soften. Add apples or other fresh fruit, and sweeteners (honey, agave, maple syrup) if desired. [This may be prepared the night before for an even softer breakfast!]
I nearly cried.