Friday, June 24, 2011

Australia changed my eating habits

My sister, Jenny Peters, took me on a 3 week trip to Austalia a couple of years ago. Sydney, the Whitsundays, Great Barrier Reef, oldest plant varieties in the world, beach houses, great was an amazing trip.

One of the items served at hotel breakfast buffets was a thing they called muselix. I've seen it here..packaged, registered trademark, dry, chalk like. Not in Australia.  Mixed in with a delicious yogurt, nuts, dried fruit and some sort of grain made for a delicious and hearty combination..not too much and I was filled up. Returned home, nothing but the chalky stuff again.

Found a couple of places with better granola, a cousin to this mix. But still not what I was looking for. And then I got Mark Bittman's books: How to Cook Everything and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. He has a start with this basic thing and then change it up approach..a simple, use what is fresh and/or in your cabinet style of cooking. A substitute anything and everything, end up with a delicious finish approach to cooking. Right up our alley, as we eat lots of what we grow and the closest, not great grocery store is 7 miles away and the real, have all you could want grocery store is 15 miles away..each way.

Last year at the Farmers on the Square market in Carlisle, I met Melanie from Keswick Creamery. And their rendition of yogurt, which tastes much like what I ate in Australia. The other day she had a long list of things not in her yogurt..thickeners and stabilizers and a bunch of others. I've known it was delicious and sure do not miss all those additives I can't pronounce.

We started making a granola or muselix mix here, and adding it to the sort of yogurt Keswick makes. It is delicious, filling, satisfying, yum. Here is how we do it. O, and even Homer, the breakfast in a box dude, eats this!

We combine the oats, raw cashews and raw slivered almonds on top of the stove (not the egg, that snuck in the photo) in a roasting pan, to just toast a little while the oven heats. Stir the oats and nuts so they don't burn while on stovetop.

It will look like this! Once the oven is at 325 degrees, pop the pan in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Remove, put the pan on a rack to cool. Add the bag of cranberries and stir it up. Side of pan hot! Don't touch!

Then add honey..ours is raw and full flavored..add maple syrup if you prefer..

Put the granola/muselix into an airtight container..we use a clear glass jar so we can see it, and when hungry put a little of your mix along with some frischkase (or yogurt) in a bowl and eat up! Yum!

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