Jan262018

Posted in Recipes.

If you’ve never heard of bircher muesli, just know that it was basically the first rendition of overnight oats, developed by a Swiss physician in 1900. I’m sure it wasn’t as cool then as overnight oats are now (no Instagram in 1900), but it’s an important piece of trivia to note that Maximilian Bircher-Benner, the inventor of bircher muesli, was one of the first proponents of the raw diet. Now, I’m not really a fan of that diet, but I’m a big fan of bircher muesli…so I think I can overlook Dr Bircher Benner’s pseudoscientific views on raw food in order to promote this yummy breakfast dish of oats and fruit.

I’m a very nostalgic person, especially with food. My mom used to take me to Movenpick, a Swiss restaurant in downtown Toronto to get their bircher muesli. It was full of oats, of course, but also blueberries and probably cream, which made it rich and absolutely delicious. I haven’t had it in forever, but it’s something I’ve always remembered.

While I find overnight oats sometimes grossly slimy, bircher muesli seems to have a drier texture because it has a higher ratio of fruit to oats than overnight oats tend to. There’s a million ways to make bircher muesli, of course, but I wanted to replicate those Movenpick ones using a delicious new twist – blueberry jam. To be specific, blueberry chia jam that I made myself, since I didn’t want to use regular jam. Chia jam is so simple and quick to make, it’s well worth the effort. You can actually use whichever fruit you want in this jam (and these bircher recipes) so don’t feel limited by blueberries.

After making the jam, layer in underneath the oats for a parfait.

Some bircher muesli recipes (more traditional ones) get you to soak the oats overnight. Eh, don’t bother. I found the result without soaking to be very good. I used large flake oats in my version. I tried steel cut oats, and they were far too hard (maybe I should have soaked them, lol). I figured that quick oats would yield mush. The large flake oats gave me that rough texture I really wanted. As far as the dairy part, you’ll see that I did add Greek yogurt to the two non-vegan versions, but I didn’t overdo it. Nothing is more gross than slimy oats, but over-yogurted oats that are as thick as concrete aren’t so great either. I stayed pretty true to my formula of 2 cups of fruit + 2 cups of liquid/dairy + 2 cups of oats, plus mix-ins. If you like your oats runnier, then simply add more liquid. You’ll notice that for the oats, I used frozen blueberries. I like the way they yield liquid when they’re thawed, which further enriches the finished oats with sweetness and a beautiful color.

blueberry oats

If you hate coconut, take the coconut out. If you’d like to use cashews instead of almonds, go right ahead. You can certainly tweak my recipes.

I was actually going to add lavender to the chia jam but decided that that might be a little out there for some people so I left it plain. Don’t count it out for a future post, though!

 

 

 

I made this recipe SO MANY TIMES that I had exactly zero clean spoons left in my kitchen from all that mixing and tasting. It was a labor of love to get it exactly right in three different renditions: traditional (with coconut and pepitas); dairy-free (made with coconut milk and almonds); and with juice (made with pomegranate juice and almonds). All three are delish and I just actually ate the dairy free ones for dinner! OMG SO GOOD.

Here are the three recipes plus the chia jam recipe. Enjoy! XO Abby

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Blueberry Chia Jam

Super fast and easy, this jam can be made with any fruit you want. If you like a runnier jam, just use less chia seed.

Ingredients
  • 4 cups fresh blueberries
  • 4-6 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 3 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Place blueberries in a small pot and cook on low heat until they begin to break down and release their juices. While they're cooking, use a potato masher or wooden spoon to break them up a bit.
  2. Once the blueberries begin to soften, add the lemon juice and maple syrup and cook for another 3-5 minutes or until desired texture is reached.
  3. Remove from heat, stir in chia seeds, and let stand for 5-10 minutes until gelled.
  4. Cool and place into refrigerator in sealed container.

 

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Double Blueberry Bircher Muesli with Pumpkin Seeds and Coconut

This oat and fruit dish is a delicious way to start your day!

Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 cups large flake oats
  • 2 cups frozen blueberries thawed with juice reserved
  • 2 cups 2% or whole milk
  • 1/2 cup 2% or higher-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Instructions
  1. Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate in a covered bowl overnight or for at least 4-6 hours.
  2. Place a layer of chia jam in a glass jar or container, then layer the oat mixture on top. Refrigerate, covered, until you're ready to eat it!

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Double Blueberry Pomegranate Bircher Muesli with Almonds

Blueberries and pomegranate combine to make a sweeter, delicious breakfast dish!

Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 cups frozen blueberries thawed with liquid reserved
  • 1 cup 2% or whole milk
  • 1 cup pomegranate juice
  • 1/2 cup sliced or cracked almonds
  • 1 cup plain 2% or higher-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Optional: pomegranate seeds
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the above ingredients and refrigerate in a covered bowl overnight or for at least 4-6 hours.
  2. Place a layer of chia jam in a glass jar or container, then layer the oat mixture on top. Refrigerate until you're ready to eat it.
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Dairy Free Double Blueberry Bircher Muesli with Almonds

This vegan breakfast combines oats, fruit, and chia jam for a delicious start to your day!

Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 cups frozen blueberries thawed with liquid reserved
  • 2 cups large flake oats
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup almonds cracked
  • 1 tablespoon flax seed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Combine all of the above ingredients.
  2. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4-6 hours.
  3. Place a layer of chia jam in a glass jar or container, then layer the oat mixture on top.
  4. Store covered in the refrigerator until you're ready to eat!

 

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