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My magnificent muesli

You can find out why this entry is no longer called íMy mighty mueslií at the bottom of the page.

Update 9 March 2010 Since I wrote this page, I have fiddled around with the recipe. The main change from the list shown below is that Iíve abandoned the sesame seeds: theyíre so small that they all fall to the bottom of the box! On the wider subject of breakfast, I decided recently that my ageing system might benefit from a daily injection of wheat bran. However, this is deeply unpalatable stuff. My first solution was to mix my two desertspoonfuls into some yogurt, but Iíve discovered that itís much less offensive mixed thoroughly into stewed Bramley apples. Iíve also taken to having four to six prunes with my muesli: Holland and Barrett sell some excellent French íjumboí prunes, which I cook in a little water with dark muscovado sugar until puffed up and tender. No need to pre-soak.

Iím a creature of habit, and one of by best-established habits is breakfast - from Monday to Friday, at least. I drink a large glass or orange juice to wash down whichever pills Iím taking this morning: formerly Sainsburyís own long-life brand íwith juicy bitsí, but sometimes Tropicana, also with juicy bits (though itís a bit sweet for me), and more recently the Co-opís or Sainsburyís freshly squeezed.

Then itís muesli and yogurt to set me up for the day.

I used to have Danone Activia low-fat plain yogurt, and when I didnít feel like trekking to Sainsburyís I treated myself to either Onken Natural Biopot or Yeo Valley full-fat product from our village Co-op - or our One-Stop Shop (a covert bit of the Tesco plan to eat the world, but very handy as itís open from 6am to 11pm seven day a week and is less than five minutes walk from home).

Recently (February 2011) I started making my own yogurt in a Thermos flask - see Home-made Yogurt. This is at least as good as the commercial products and a whole lot cheaper.

I have two heaped dessertspoonfuls of muesli (cheating a bit if I come up a bit short of raisins or see a particularly tasy nut at the top of the container) and a third of a 500-gram carton of yogurt (though Iíve reduced this lately as part of my latest attempt to lose weight). I add a dollop of cold stewed fruit - Bramley apples and black plums are favourites (we stew the plums with a cinnamon stick, which really livens up breakfast!) - or a few fresh strawberries, raspberries or blueberries.

The muesli itself is my own blend, made from products bought at my local Holland and Barrett health shop:

  • 1kg muesli base - several kinds of flaked wholegrains
  • 500g mixed broken nuts
  • 500g íSalad Sprinkleí - a mixture of seeds including pumpkin and sunflower
  • 250g sesame seeds
  • 500g raisins (though Iíve cheated on the current batch and added another 500g)
  • 500g dried dates, each cut into halves or thirds depending on size (a fairly recent addition - loads of calories but loads of flavour too)

Until recently all these products were under the íNatureís Harvestí brand, but the dreaded Nealís Yard seem to be taking over yet another corner of the world. First they wanted a monopoly on Ruth Kirkhamís magnificent Lancashire cheese, and have even got into the marketing act on our wonderful new local unpasteurised Stichelton (Stilton in all but name). Having written that, though, I did a bit of research on the Web and concluded that the stuff from H&B wasnít the same brand at all - Nealís Yard is, after all, just a place in Covent Garden, so I suppose anyone can use the name.

Anyway, thatís the mix.

Even with low-fat yogurt, this is not a low-calorie breakfast. However, before my last successful attempt to lose weight I used to have three spoonfuls of muesli and half a 500g carton of yogurt.

And it contains nothing but healthy stuff, and it really sets me up for the day - to the point where I quite often skip lunch altogether, or make do with a banana and a cuppa. And, as it turns out, I have been managing to lose weight steadily without sacrificing my beloved breakfast. But I digress...

Recently, I roasted a few sesame seeds to add to some recipe or other and had quite a few left over. So I chucked them in my muesli box - a nice container we bought with a box of Alpen before I got into rolling my own, which holds a whole batch if I donít add the extra raisins and dates (if I do the overflow needs a large Kilner jar). I was amazed at the difference they made to the overall flavour, so I toasted all the sesame seeds for the next batch. Iíve also tried grilling some of the muesli base carefully to a light golden colour, which adds flavour and crunch. So if you try this recipe, please do experiment.

You need a big bowl to mix everything in and a good container to hold this massive quantity, which keeps for months.

I just spoon out my muesli and yogurt rations and stir thoroughly. It knocks spots off anything you can buy ready-mixed in a carton - trust me!

Why this page isnít called íMy mighty mueslií any more

I changed the title after the following message was left anonymously and without an email address in the Contact me box:

íDear mr Marden,
I am the owner of the intellectual property rights to the name Mighty Muesli.
I am the owner of the company - Otter Valley foods ltd in Devon UK which has been making Mighty Muesli for a number of years.
I would request that you desist for using my name " Mighty Muesli " to advertsie your site and your muesli
thank youí

For the record, I was not using the name to advertise anything: this page simply tells you how I make my own muesli for home consumption. Mighty Muesli has a top Google ranking, whereas my item only gets in near the bottom of the first Google page, so Iím not sure what the problem is! But just to show there are no hard feelings, you can find Mighty Muesli here - and my recipe below. On the 22 September 2009 I also took the trouble to track Otter Valley Foods down via Google and send them the following email, to which they have never replied. Nice people...

Email sent to Otter Valley Foods on the 22 September 2009

Since you didnít bother to leave a web address or email address when you posted your comment, Iíve had to resort to Google.

Although I donít think you have a monopoly on calling a muesli Ďmightyí (no capital letters), and although I am not advertising anything Ė just sharing my personal recipe Ė I have changed the title of the page and put a [rather discreet!] link to your website on it.

Personal site for Paul Marsden: frustrated writer; experimental cook and all-round foodie; amateur wine-importer; former copywriter and press-officer; former teacher, teacher-trainer, educational software developer and documenter; still a professional web-developer but mostly retired.

This site was transferred in June 2005 to the Sites4Doctors Site Management System, and has been developed and maintained there ever since.