Breakfast in Switzerland is iconic. Everyone knows Bircher Muesli and yes, it is a regular staple, especially on the weekend. I honestly can’t remember what I had for breakfast as a kid, but I can recall my dad having a hot Ovaltine ready for me when I stumbled out of bed.
Switzerland also has the best range of breads. On my visits back home with the kids (before we went off gluten), we visited the local bakery as daily pilgrimage…Shelves of freshly baked bread, different grades of wholemeal, real ‘sour’ dough, white, half white, seeded, with nuts and raisins, seeds and potato. Then, on the display counter, you have ‘recess’ buns (with nuts and sultanas), chocolate buns (the swiss equivalent to a chocolate croissant), plain milk buns, and then the pastries…the kids loved it and I think I over indulged them, wanting for them to memories the smells and tastes of my childhood.
But back to breakfast….yes, muesli and Bircher are still a favourite. Bircher is usually prepared the night before, with a mix of berries and plain yoghurt and water over oats. The usual add ons would be nuts and dried fruit, along with the obligatory grated apples. In the morning, we might add some fresh berries.
My staple to have in the cupboard is toasted muesli, that the kids can have as a quick breakfast in summer, or to sprinkle over a smoothie in the afternoon. I source wheat and gluten-free oats to the great relief of determined no 2 son, whose main food is oats. Most of my dishes revolve around his requirements…he is the one I focus on to make sure he gets enough protein and fibre (carbs is no problem, he could eat pasta and bread all day).
So, here I have added lots of nuts and seeds with the oats, along with the addition of Inca berries, which he loves to pick out!
Orange scented Muesli
- 3 cups of gluten/wheat free oats
- handfuls of chopped almonds, hazelnuts and pecans
- 1 cup of mixed seeds (pepitas, sunflower, sesame, hemp, flax)
- 1 cup quinoa flakes
- 1 tbs cinnamon
- 1/2 cup Inca berries or sultanas, dried apricots
- 2 ripe bananas
- zest of one orange and juice
- 1/2 cup of shredded coconut
- 3 tbs chia seeds
- 3 tbs coconut syrup or maple
- 3 tbs coconut oil, melted
Mix all of your dry ingredients in a large bowl. On a plate, mash the bananas, and with your hands rub them into the muesli mix. Add cinnamon and orange zest.
Melt the coconut oil and coconut syrup. Pour over oats along with the orange juice and with a spoon toss until all is well combined. Spread the mix in a thin layer over a tray lined with baking paper. You might have to do it in 2 lots.
Bake for 30 min on a low setting in the oven, ca. 130C, turning occasionally until it is golden all over. Let it cool down, then add your dried fruit. The bananas will have dried up a bit and add some additional sweet surprise.
Serve with your preferred milk or yoghurt. Or sprinkle some over your Acai Bowl or smoothie for a bit of crunch.