On the horizon sits the sun, a bright yellow beginning, slowly climbing its ladder up the coloured sky. A light breeze pushes you into a rhythmic run, right along the sleepy beach and up to a grassy green headland. You stop to catch you breath, your heart hammering gratitude as you drink in the 360-degree view.
A couple of more minutes. A couple of more colours… Time to go.
Following the seagulls down the sandy path, past the receding aqua wash and waving to the local surfers, you finally reach the end of your journey. With the salty ocean breeze brushing your face, you turn like a magnet to the sparkling ocean. With a start, you run in to meet your old friend with a joyful laugh, still fully clothed. There you float. Free. Happy. Alive.
With exhilarated rosy cheeks and slight regret, you drag yourself away from the caring hands of the ocean… time for the markets!
And this is just the way my Sunday began.
I am a big fan of local markets in Sydney. They offer fresh produce, you can meet and support local farmers and taste before you buy. It’s such a sensory experience. They smell of warm crusty bread, cinnamon sticks and freshly blended citrus juices all of which mingle in with a sea of interesting people as you weave your way in and out. My fresh produce lasts about twice as long and tastes about twice as good!
This Sunday I was on a mission. A client had given me a delicious muesli recipe and brought some in as a gift (thank you, you know who you are). It tasted phenomenal and I was committed to making my own variety.
As I wondered amongst the bustling stores I bartered over buckwheat and nutted out the best place to buy my pecans. Half an hour later I was content with a bag full of goodies. I couldn’t stop smiling. I was so excited.
Experimentation took the good part of my Sunday afternoon but this is what I came up with:
- 300g sprouted buckwheat
- 1 cup of oats (you could use quinoa flakes if you want gluten free)
- 1/2 cup of amaranth
- 200g pecans or walnuts
- 100g sesame seeds
- 100g pumpkin seeds
- 2 long (10-12cm) cinnamon quills
- 2 tsp. dried nutmeg
- 120g medjool dates (deseeded and cut into small pieces)
- 300g dried apple (cut into small pieces)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. salt
- 80g Canadian Maple Syrup
Optional (makes it a little higher in energy but a lot more crunchy!)
- 50g coconut oil
- 100g shredded coconut
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
2. With mortar and pestle or end of rolling pin bash/grind cinnamon to break up sticks. With your hands then break/rip up cinnamon into small bits (as small as you can!).
3. Add all other ingredients into a big mixing bowl, melting coconut oil if necessary. Mix well to coat with oil and maple syrup.
4. Put into 1 or 2 large baking trays lined with baking paper.
5. Periodically check muesli over next 30-40minutes, using a wooden spoon to slowly turn over the muesli when it looks brown.
6. Leave to cool for 20 mins.
- Amaranth is a great source of iron (~5mg/cup).
- Oats contain beta glucan, a soluble fibre to reduce cholesterol levels.
- Apples contain polyphenols and flavonoids, which prevent oxidation in the body, preventing disease and ageing.
- Buckwheat is a good source of magnesium, a micronutrient responsible for more than 300 enzymatic reactions, including enzymes required for maintaining stable blood glucose levels.
- All the grains, nuts and seeds are an excellent source of fibre, which makes you feel full and aids digestion.
- This mix is also high in healthy omega 3 and omega 6 fats, which promote clear cognition, boost HDL (healthy) cholesterol, maintain hormone production and lubricate joints.
- Pumpkin seeds are a good source of zinc, vital for promoting immunity, clear skin, strong hair and nails.
- Sesame are incredibly rich sources of many essential minerals including Calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese, zinc and selenium.
How to eat this delicious mix:
- Portion out ½ a cup (trust me doesn’t look like a lot but its so filling!). Add some milk, yoghurt and a piece of fruit for breakfast. Wouldn’t be surprised if you are content until lunch ;)
- Nibble on as a snack during your work day.
- Add over the top of some ice cream as a treat.