I have a thing for breakfast. I grew up in a family of night owls, but within the past few years I have found how much I love the early morning. I have talked about it before, the calm anticipation for the day, and how the few habitual things that go on at the first set the mood for the following hours. There are a few more things about the beginning hours of the day that I love. For one, it's always cool in the morning, even in the dead of summer. And if you know me, you know I love sweater weather. Every moment is like a deep breath, serene and invigorating. Morning's light is the perfection of soft, the human eye seems to be the only way to capture it as purely as you see it. I especially love when I am outside as the sun comes up over the east range. It inches along, bringing light and stirring life closer and closer, and if I'm standing in a place where the sun shines directly on me, I can literally feel the moment the day begins. I love that about light. It's like a physical being that changes and moves you.
Of course I am talking about the mornings where you can be present at every moment. Not the kind (that I have had my share of) where I have woken up late, rushed out of the house, and forgotten to notice my unkempt hair and mismatched socks. No, those mornings are a completely different animal that I like to see very little of. So let's return to the morning's where we have at least five minutes for breakfast; and a good one.
Recently I read Sheena's post about raw oatmeal. I have always wanted to try my oatmeal raw, but just never consciously did it (which seems silly, all you have to do is throw it in a bowl). Then I realized I actually had eaten raw oatmeal before, only we call it muesli, and it's not always "raw" or uncooked. Oftentimes the oats and seeds are toasted in a shallow pan until they are just browned, or rather tanned. It's the polar to winter's oatmeal, skinny, chewy and chilled rather than thick, creamy and warming; the yang for a summer's morning. The toasted nuts and seeds add a crunch that doesn't falter under the influence of chilled milk, and the fresh fruit and honey included at the end provide enough sweet that doesn't cloy. It is equally satisfying with goat's, almond or whole fat yogurt, plain and tart. I might also mention muesli and yogurt are much easier to eat on the go rather than milk and muesli, if you do happen to face that animal of an overused snooze button.
6 cups pressed oats
1 cup pecans, whole
1 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup coconut
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup wheat bran
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup sesame seeds
Warm a skillet over medium high heat.
Toast the oats and seeds until golden. Toast each of them separately as they each require varied amounts of time.
Combine everything in a bowl or jar and mix well. (Be sure that the germ and bran don't settle, we scoop from the bottom for this reason.)
Serve with a handful of raisins or other dried fruit, a sprinkle of chia seeds, cut fresh fruit, a drizzle of honey or maple syrup, yogurt, and/or milk.
- this is enough to last you quite a while, if you won't be eating it a lot, or it's just you I would suggest either halving the recipe, or freezing extras.
- the wheat germ and bran are completely optional, especially for those with celiac.
- try variations of nuts, ones that you enjoy and are not allergic to: chopped almonds, walnuts, etc.
- Really, you can add any type of nut, seed, grain you like. We add grapenut cereal when we have it, not exactly a nut found in nature, but I like the crunch.
- I don't use this only for breakfast, I also sprinkle some of it atop spring greens from our garden (they actually grew this year!) or the farm, or the store. I drizzle this vinaigrette on top and add extra nuts and dried fruit.