Christmas Muesli

December 17, 2011

It’s Christmas time!!! Just in case you didn’t already know.

I absolutely love to give presents at Christmas. I think I get that from my mum. She still does the full Christmas morning, with stockings and presents and “Santa was here!!”…even though us kids are all grown up. But I love that. We all knew Ben was officially part of the family when mum got him his very own Christmas stocking.

This year, as Ben and I are busy saving for our Wedding in (wow) 2 months, we’re looking for thrifty ways to spoil our loved ones at Christmas. For our gifts to each other, we’ve set a $20 limit and a requirement that something has to be made. Nothing says love more than a homemade gift. Ben is a fabulous drawer and writer, so I have no doubt I’ll be receiving some sort of short story. Usually his stories involve talking vegetables. I assure you it’s both hilarious and adorable. Me? I think I’ll have to get crafty soon…

I won’t be handing out drawings or songs to friends and family, however. Somehow I don’t think they’d be as psyched and supportive of my lame efforts as Ben. Instead, I’ll be giving them a batch of my Christmas Muesli.

…..

I developed this recipe in the hope of creating something that was a) delicious, b) light (as this time of the year can be overloaded with cookies and chocolates and pudding) and c) not too expensive. While I heart granola, it’s not as healthy nor cheap to make as it’s untoasted counterpart, muesli. And so I went with muesli. Lovely.

To add a little of that sweet, toasty, crunchy granola goodness, I toasted the almonds and pepitas before coating them in maple syrup and cinnamon. You’ll be surprised how much deliciousness this adds! I tried to find dried cherries to include in this recipe, as this is a Christmas Muesli after all and in Australia, Christmas time is when cherries are at their best. Alas, my search was fruitless – pun very much intended. And so I went with craisins instead – a happy fallback. Lastly, please ensure you don’t settle for a bran that tastes like cardboard. Choosing a delicious bran as I do (and I promise it does exist) will make such a difference.

Christmas Muesli

Ingredients

½ cup Slivered Almonds
½ cup Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
4 teaspoons Pure Maple Syrup
2/3 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
2 ½ cups Rolled Oats
1 ¼ cups Vogel’s Ultra Bran (Soy and Linseed) – you can use other brans, but I love this one as it’s delicious. Be sure to pick a yummy bran/bran flakes!
½ cup Craisins (sweetened dried cranberries)
3 tablespoons Dark Chocolate Chips

Method

1. Toast the almond slivers in a large non-stick pan over low heat for 3-4 minutes, shaking the pan to ensure even toasting.
2. Add the pepitas and toast for an extra ~3 minutes until the almond slivers are lightly browned and fragrant.
3. Turn off the heat then add the maple syrup and cinnamon to the pan, stirring the almonds and pepitas to ensure they are evenly coated in syrup and spice. It will sizzle a little, that’s just part of the fun. Set aside and allow to cool.
4. In a large bowl, add the oats, bran, craisins and dark chocolate chips.
5. Once the almonds and pepitas are cooled, use your hands to break up any pieces that are stuck together and add these to the bowl.
6. Mix everything together and then transfer to a jar or airtight container. Enjoy with milk and some fresh, sliced banana if you wish.

This recipe makes a big batch but trust me, you’ll want it all! It could serve as one generous gift or two smaller ones. I hope my friends and family enjoy their Christmas Muesli. Ben is already requesting more. I have a feeling that this recipe won’t be restricted to Christmas time in our house.

Heidi xo

16 Comments

  • Reply Hannah December 17, 2011 at 8:37 am

    Oh how I want to make granola but it is expensive (that real maple syrup ain't cheap!). Yummo, I'm totally going to make those coated almonds & pepitas to add to our muesli 🙂

  • Reply Michelle Chin December 17, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    i couldn't really tell the diff. between granola and muesli. now i know. 😀 also, didn't know pumpkin seeds were pepita. ;D

  • Reply Hannah December 17, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    Oh, I love that you've reminded me that homemade muesli can be just as delicious (and sometimes a little less dessert-like 😛 ) than homemade granola!

    Also, I actually think I've always loved the stockings more than presents on Christmas morning. This could have something to do with the fact that while everyone else in our family gets little stockings, my brother and I get pillowcases 😛

  • Reply Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella December 17, 2011 at 9:16 pm

    Hehe that's so cute! And I laughed when you said that you wouldn't be handing out songs or drawings. I received a hand written note the other week and it was so lovely that I kept it! 😛

  • Reply wikigirl December 17, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    Yum!! I'm making jars of muesli for everyone and have been struggling about which recipe to use. Problem solved, thanks Heidi 🙂 What would you recommend for an oats replacement? MIL can't eat most grains unfortunately 🙁

  • Reply Heidi December 18, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Hannah – wonderful! & no its not cheap 🙁

    Michelle – happy to clear that up hehe!

    Hannah – fantastic!! it's the anticipation, isn't it 🙂

    Lorraine – oh how sweet, that is very lovely.

    Wikigirl – as per my tweet to you, I'd suggest quinoa flakes or puffed amaranth or other grain she can tolerate (perhaps she has trouble with gluten??) & extra toasted nuts for deliciousness 😉

    Heidi xo

  • Reply The InTolerant Chef December 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Yummo! What a lovely pressie for everyone, delicious and thoughtful. I think setting a price limit is a great idea to keep spending under control. good luck with the saving for three big day!

  • Reply msihua December 18, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    ooo another yummy looking granola recipe! Love home made pressies!

  • Reply Heidi December 19, 2011 at 8:15 am

    InTolerant Chef – thank you!! I love the idea of a price limit too 🙂

    Msihua – homemade is the best!

    Heidi xo

  • Reply Iron Chef Shellie December 20, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Awwww your mum is so cute! And Ben…. well.. we all know he is perfect!

    These would look great in jars! I'll remember for next year.

    I think the price limit makes you to think more creative. Love it!
    x

  • Reply Cass @foodmyfriend December 20, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    That looks beautiful 🙂 I'm doing biscuit and nougat boxes 🙂

  • Reply Heidi December 20, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    Michele – thanks, lovely!! they did look super cute in a jar with a green and white spotted ribbon tied around 🙂 – I know you'll appreciate that!

    Cass – oooh delicious!!

    Heidi xo

  • Reply Jess December 23, 2011 at 5:07 pm

    Hey Heidi, just made a batch of this for christmas morning…I had a sneaky bowl just now and it is delicious! Em will love it too I'm sure. You are so clever 🙂 Jess S

  • Reply Heidi December 28, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    jess – sorry for the belated reply!! That makes me so happy, you're very sweet 🙂 Merry Christmas!! xo

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