Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Muesli

I've developed a backlog of recipes that I haven't loaded up to the blog, but here's one I couldn't ignore. I've always loved muesli, but it's usually ~$5 for a tiny box that will only last for a few meals. I figured that it can't be hard to make and lo-and-behold, a little internet searching and I had a recipe.

This is for a lightly sweetened, roasted version that needs overnight soaking for breakfast*. I think that if I chopped the finished product up in my food processor, I could make a fast-soaking version (I'll update this when I try it). The fun part about this recipe is that you can customize it any way you want. The following recipe makes 7-8 finished cups of muesli. If you eat it a lot you'll want to double the recipe.

This is the un-soaked version. Imagine it pleasantly soggy the next day with the dried fruits plumped up and juicy.

Preheat the oven to 300.

4 c. rolled oats (or other rolled grains)
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1/2 c. honey or maple syrup (or experiment with other sweeteners)
1 tsp. vanilla (optional)
1 1/2 c. nuts of your choice, for instance:
  • blanched, slivered almonds
  • chopped walnuts
  • sunflower seeds
  • sesame seeds
  • chopped hazelnuts
  • chopped pecans
  • coconut flakes
1 c. dried fruit of your choice, finely chopped. For instance:
  • cranberries or other berries
  • raisins or currants
  • apples
  • apricots
  • papaya
  • mango
  • date pieces
1 tsp. spice, such as cinnamon or cardamom (optional)

Warm the honey or maple syrup in the microwave or saucepan so that it is free-flowing, and stir in the oil and (optional) vanilla. In a large bowl, add the oats and nuts and pour the honey-oil mixture over. Toss so that the oats are evenly coated.

Spread the oat and nut mixture on a baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally so that the edges don't scorch.

Meanwhile, chop the fruit and place it in the same large bowl you used before. When the oats are roasted, remove them from the oven and allow them to cool completely. If you want to grind the mixture, do it now. Mix the oat and nut mixture with the chopped fruit. Store in an airtight container.

To serve for breakfast, soak the muesli in milk or water or even apple juice overnight*. It can be eaten cold or warmed up. If you soak it in water or juice, it is best on top of or mixed with yogurt. You can even add more fresh fruit if you like!

*I'm not sure such a long soaking is necessary with modern rolled oats. Soaking it for as long as it takes to make some coffee and take a shower may suffice.

A few notes after making many batches of this:
  1. Make sure not to over-roast--doing so makes the muesli bitter. The oats harden up after they're removed from the oven, so it's ok if they still seem a little soft when you remove them. Err on the side of under-roasting. You can also try a lower temp for a longer time.
  2. Chopping the muesli seemed unnecessary.
  3. A standard cylinder of Quaker oats holds 6 c. oats, so it's 1.5x this recipe.
  4. So far my favorite combo is oats sweetened with maple syrup, with dried blueberries, almonds, and just a hint of cinnamon.

3 comments:

Lorna said...

I just wanted to say how much I love your blog. It is always full of family warmth and wonderful inspiration. Fantastic!

Lillian said...

That's wonderful to hear! We are glad that you enjoy it :) May I ask how you found our blog?

I will have to check out your book list once I'm done with school and can get back to reading again. Take care!
LM

Lorna said...

I found your blog searching for 'barley stew' on Goggle. We loved yours :)