Recently I promised my niece a silly parcel to cheer her up. I was all set to make something very funny and ridiculous, like an evil bunny egg cosy for instance, but at the last minute I thought to myself; "Is a very silly non-edible craft item the best gift for in impecunious student who only has a few more months in the city?" and the answer was "No".
Instead I decided that something edible, hopefully both delicious and healthy, would be just the thing to brave the Wellington winter. Roll on the rolled oats!
Wheat-free muesli (for my niece, who can't eat wheat but is okay with oats) Recipe adapted from Alison Holst's muesli recipe in "Meals without Red Meat"
4 c rolled oats (porridge oats or wholegrain, or a mixture of the two)
1/2 c shredded dried coconut
1/2 c pumpkin seeds
1/2 c sunflower seeds
1/2 c almonds, cut into large pieces
2 T (heaped) ground flaxseed
1/4 c honey
2 T brown sugar
1 T water
1 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t salt
2 T plain vegetable oil
1/2 - 1 c dried fruit
Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Melt together the honey, sugar, water, cinnamon, salt, and vegetable oil, then stir through the dry ingredients, mixing well. Spread in a large oven dish and bake at 170 degrees celsius for 15 min. Give it a stir and bake it 15 min more, checking regularly to make sure it's not burning. Let it cool completely before adding the dried fruit (I added 1/2 c raisins and 1/2 c sultanas). If you add the fruit while the muesli is still warm it will go as hard as nasty little rocks after the muesli cools; this is the truth and I know it from experience. Divide the muesli in half, give one share to your niece and keep the other half for yourself. Store in an airtight container.
And have a good week, okay?