Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Muesli for Dinner (or lunch or breakfast)

Muesli for dinner? It might not be what Herr Doktor Professor Maximilian Oskar Bircher-Benner had in mind back in the late 19th century, but at the end a busy 21st century day, muesli can be a quick healthy solution to the evening meal challenge.

Legend has it that Bircher-Benner was served muesli while traveling in the Swiss Alps and was so impressed with the vitality of the animal herders who consumed it regularly that he was inspired to bring the concept back to his Zurich patients in hopes of improving their health. It became a classic breakfast cereal still known in Europe as Birchermuesli.

Unlike granola (which also dates back to the late 19th century) the grains in muesli are not toasted or roasted, and no oils or sweeteners are added. Rolled oats are the most commonly mentioned grain in muesli recipes; rolled rye and wheat flakes are also used. Nuts, seeds, dried and fresh fruit complete the mix.

My simple version of homemade muesli really requires no recipe; I just toss whatever ingredients I find in my pantry into a bowl, add some fresh fruit, soy milk or nut milk, and eat. Here's what was in my bowl last night! (Makes one serving).

Monday Night Muesli

1 pink lady apple, chopped
1 heaping tablespoon organic rolled oats
1 tablespoon almonds, chopped
1 tablespoon hazelnuts, chopped
1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon golden raisins
1 medjul date, chopped
a few drops vanilla extract
soy milk (or nut milk)

Put it all in a bowl, adding as much soy milk as you like. Eat very slowly while visualizing craggy mountain peaks and blue skies, meadows carpeted with wildflowers and little snow white goats grazing in the sunlight.