Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Healthy Cold Cereal Alternative

Store-bought cold cereals are certainly convenient, but not only are they quite expensive . . . they are really not very healthy. Even the organic, whole-grain varieties are highly processed and the nutrition really only comes from the chemically-added nutrients. So, what can you do when you need a quick breakfast in the morning? Well, my mom used to make us muesli--a breakfast she had grown up with in Germany. In fact, in the summer when fresh fruit and berries were plentiful, she'd just make a huge batch and we'd snack on it all day. It's a breakfast I still love . . . and my kids do too. In fact, it was the first meal they learned to make on their own.

Muesli is basically rolled oats soaked in milk (I use nondairy milk and also add yogurt for the probiotics) mixed with fresh or dried fruit and nuts/seeds if you like as well. I also like to add a splash of orange juice if I don't have oranges in it . . . it adds a nice tang. You can even use other rolled grains besides oats. No recipe is needed--this is a meal you cater to your own taste (though for those of you who prefer exact measurements, there are recipes for a winter muesli and summer muesli in The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook).

And the nice thing is you can make it for one, like I did for myself this week with blueberries, strawberries, and sliced almonds. Or make a big batch like my daughter did when she got home from school so we'd have enough left for breakfast tomorrow morning (muesli will stay good for several days). Besides the berries, she added chopped oranges, sliced bananas, and raisins.

Have fun and experiment!

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