January 02 2024 – Sophie Ward
I've started a new tradition. Every morning on January 1st, we'll host a brunch with a small group of close friends, people we want to see more of in the new year, people we treasure and celebrate. I set the table with a white tablecloth, sunflowers, plates and sparkling water, a dish of sea salt and Vegemite of course. On this year's menu, I included a very Australian dish known as Bircher muesli; essentially a soaked oat mixture made with yogurt, grated apple and nuts, left overnight until the oats have softened. Most beachside cafes back home make this (it originated in Switzerland and was created by Dr. Bircher-Benner) and it's always so perfect for a fresh start. My version includes one of my favorite trios of flavors: vanilla, lemon zest and blackberry. Everyone at the table asked for the recipe, so here it is. To fresh starts!
4 cups rolled oats
1 cup greek yogurt
3 cups milk or water
2 tsp fresh lemon zest
1/4 tsp vanilla powder or I tsp vanilla exact
1-2 tbsp maple syrup (or to taste)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 apple, cored and grated (no need to peel)
1/4 cup fresh or frozen blackberries
Place the oats in a ceramic or glass bowl. In a separate bowl whisk together the yogurt and the water until milky. Pour over the oats. Add vanilla, salt, maple syrup and lemon zest to the oat mixture, then add the grated apple, chopped walnuts and blackberries. Add additional water or milk to the same level as the oats.
Cover and leave overnight in the fridge. Enjoy the next morning with a splash of milk, extra yogurt or fruit.