I was doing a bit of research recently into the development of the raw food movement and was interested to learn that muesli was the ‘creation’ of one of the original pioneers of eating raw fruit and veg. According to Wikipedia Maximilian Oskar Bircher-Benner (August 22, 1867, Aarau – January 24, 1939) was a Swiss physician and a pioneer in nutritional research. At his sanatorium in Zürich, a balanced diet of raw vegetables and fruit was used as a means to heal patients, contrary to the beliefs commonly held at the end of the 19th century.
I’ve been running The Barn Vegan Guest House for the last 10 years and muesli has been a staple part of the breakfast menu throughout. We have a DIY muesli bar with all the ingredients in separate jars to allow individual choice in what goes into the bowl. This idea was given to my partner and I when we stayed, many years ago, in Cussens Cottage (a vegan guest house near Limerick in Ireland). It is useful for those with gluten intolerance as they can simply avoid wheat flakes, bran and oats etc.
One of the things that has been of interest in how people choose to prepare their morning muesli. We have had people who have used fruit juice rather than soya milk, some who prefer it completely dry, others who like yoghurt and one, the other day, who liked a dollop of marmalade on top!!
But the method that I prefer was shown to me some years ago by a guest. She prepares hers the night before by filling her bowl and then pouring on water, covering the bowl and leaving it overnight. My first thoughts were, to be honest, that it sounded horrible. But having tried it I couldn’t have been more wrong. The water swells all the dried fruit and softens the nuts. It changes into a kind of oat milk (if you have oats in the bowl of course!) and brings out the full sweetness of the raisins, dates apricots etc.
I thoroughly recommend this method. So when you buy all your muesli ingredients in Rice Up why not have a go? And let me have your thoughts afterwards…….