These early morning starts, which are typical in Jakarta, are a killer on the appetite. Who feels like eating a hearty breakfast at 5.30am? I recall our first week in Jakarta, feeling almost panicked at the realisation that 5.30am was my new wake up time. With kids catching a school bus at 6.35am (I could have rounded to 6.30am but that extra 5 minutes means a lot at that time of the morning!), I needed to come up with some nutritious and appealing breakfast options that would take minimal time to serve up in the morning.
Our breakfast table regularly features a tropical fruit platter (which I prepare the night before.. Yes, I did say ‘I’!) but most recently I’ve struck on a winner for all of us, husband included: Bircher Muesli. And the best thing is that you can prepare it the night before, and when refrigerated and kept in an air-tight container, it can last for a couple of days. (I prepare ours on a Sunday evening). The kids then get to garnish their bowl of muesli with an assortment of options including strawberries, raspberries, slices of fresh mango, prunes, sunflower seeds, pepitas and an extra sprinkle of Indonesian cinnamon.
Not only will this start to your day taste amazing, it will also sustain you for a good few hours. As the oats have had time to soften overnight, the muesli will also be easier to digest, allowing you to get on with your day. Now 5.30am isn’t quite as bad as it used to be!
Bircher Muesli Jakarta-Style
(8 – 10 servings)
3 grated apples (pick the crunchiest ones you can find- skin on but thoroughly washed)
2 cups rolled oats 1- 2 cups quick cooking oats
2 cups natural, unsweetened yoghurt
Coconut water Almond slithers (generous handful)
Sunflower seeds (handful) Sultanas (generous handful)
2 tsp cinnamon (powdered)
1 tsp ginger (powdered)
1- 2 tbsp coconut sugar
- Into a large bowl (preferably one with a lid) place all ingredients with the exception of the yoghurt, apple juice and coconut water. Mix thoroughly
- Add the natural yoghurt and enough apple juice and coconut water to create a sloppy consistency. (Note: a lot of this moisture will be absorbed by the oats overnight)
- Check taste- is it sweet enough? If not, add a little more coconut sugar (you can always add more sweetness when serving)
- Seal bowl and place in fridge, preferably overnight
- Remove from fridge and stir thoroughly. Check texture- if the muesli has become too stiff, add extra liquid. Even parts of apple juice, coconut water and yoghurt will ensure the muesli becomes smoother and not too sweet
- Serve with garnish suggestions (as above) and most importantly, Enjoy! (or as we say in Indonesia, Selamat makan!)
Words: Jo Photography: a journey bespoke