Bircher Muesli

I’ve had my very first taste of muesli in ’91 when our dad took us to The Peninsula Manila for breakfast. I spotted it on the menu and was intrigued by the description so I decided to get it. I immediately fell in love with the taste. It was like oatmeal and cereal combined but with a distinct flavor that I could not put my finger on. I love that it wasn’t overly sweet and is not too mushy like oatmeal.

Muesli is not something that you can just pick at the grocery store in Manila back then. You are lucky if you happen to get your hands on one at hotel boutiques or speciality food stores which is a rarity then. I can only get my muesli fix back then when we would have breakfast at The Pen as we would call it or stay overnight.

I was happy to be able to indulge on this again when we moved to the Northeast in ’99. I went through different brands looking for taste of the very first muesli I had at the Peninsula. The closest I can get was the Finax muesli sold by Ikea. Sadly they stopped selling this in 2016. Then I discovered Bob’s Red Mill Old country style muesli. It contains generous amount of oats, seeds, raisins and almonds and is not sweet at all.

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When I went back home for a visit last year, I was the one who took my dad this time to the Peninsula for breakfast. To my delight and surprise they are still serving muesli, this time as part of the buffet spread. I am so happy that it still taste exactly as I remember the first time I had it. Photo below is the muesli I had at The Pen.

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I promised myself to make this at home and look for the recipe to recreate the taste I was looking for. After going through several recipes I finally discovered the elusive ingredient that gives the distinct flavor of muesli – apples ! Grated apples is added to the muesli together with milk.

To make, place 1 cup of muesli in a container, add 1 cup of milk and 1 grated apple. Place in the fridge overnight to allow the muesli to soften and the flavors to meld.

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To serve, place your muesli in a small bowl, the add a splash of milk if you find it too dry. Then top with some thinly sliced apples or your choice of fruit. Serve cold.

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