We love breakfast. We love the clean slate of a new food day. We love cereal, berries, yoghurt and oaty-grainy-nutty things. We love protein, vegies and eggy-bacony-smoked salmony things. Really, there’s a lot of love here for a lot of different sorts of breakfasts.
There’s only one tiny problem with breakfast: the timing. At night we are full of good intentions about the next day’s breakfast but somehow, when the alarm goes in the morning, triggering an inescapable frenzy of dog-walking, dish-washer-unstacking, school lunch-making, showering, dressing etc those intentions dissipate like so much morning dew.
So we’re always on the lookout for make-ahead breakfast ideas that will give a good, nutritious, delicious kick start to the day. We’ve never been that excited by traditional bircher muesli, finding the texture and look of browning grated apple a bit creepy, but we love the idea of jazzed up pre-soaked oats with different toppings.
We’ve experimented here with using coconut water as the soaking medium – it has a gentler sweetness and lacks the acidity of fruit juice – and then mixing the softened oats with yoghurt and honey. We’ve added some chia seeds for extra protein and texture and shredded coconut because, well, we just like it. The blueberry compote should be kept in a separate container till breakfast time otherwise it bleeds onto the muesli (it still tastes great but mars its pristine creaminess). If you have any nuts or seeds around – almonds, walnuts, pepitas, sunflower seeds – you could toast them the night before too and sprinkle them on the finished dish in the morning. You could also swap the blueberry compote for any other compote, or just use fresh berries.
This is really terribly good – we’ve been hoeing into it all week at all sorts of unauthorised, non-breakfast times of the day. And, hey, if you don’t want to make it, it’s on this week’s menu.
Coconut and Blueberry Bircher Muesli Recipe
Makes 2 litres – enough for 6-8 breakfasts
Make ahead: The oats need to be soaked at least an hour ahead but may be soaked overnight, then mixed with the yoghurt and kept, covered, for up to three days in the fridge. The compote will be fine for three days in the fridge.
200g rolled oats
500ml coconut water
45g white chia seeds
50g shredded coconut
500g natural yoghurt
200g blueberries (frozen are fine)
Juice and zest of one orange
40g white sugar
To serve: toasted walnuts, flaked almonds, pepitas and/or sunflower seeds
Place the oats in a stainless steel bowl or a plastic tub with a lid. Mix through the chia seeds and shredded coconut then cover with coconut water. Place in the fridge, covered, and leave for at least an hour or overnight.
Meanwhile, place the blueberries, orange zest, juice and sugar in a small saucepan over a gentle heat. Cook until the liquid surrounding the berries thickens and becomes syrupy but don’t let the blueberries break down – you want them to retain their shape. Take off the heat and cool before refrigerating, covered.
When the oats have soaked, stir through the yoghurt and honey - you can now keep this muesli for a few days in the fridge or use it straight away.
Serve the bircher muesli topped with the compote and sprinkled with toasted nuts and/or seeds.