..of oats and ‘fondu’: Earl Grey Oats

Thursday dance class meant one amazing thing: more overnight oats! 🙂

Yumm!

Yumm!

As I mentioned in my last recipe post, I am a big fan of Lauren’s blog . She has so many great ideas, and I have yet to try them all! When I first discovered this small jewel of a website, I focused on testing her stove top oatmeal, as they are a more spontaneous breakfast option (you make them if you want them, no planning necessary..)
I’ve always liked all things oatmeal; the porridge kind with maple syrup, manuka honey or cinnamon sugar were always a number one pick, same goes for oatmeal raisin – or oatmeal peanut butter – cookies. But making porridge always required a 15 minute time investment, which during the week, I really didn’t have. I took to buying food bars with oats in them (absolute favorite being Clif Bars, but being me, I only like certain foods for limited time periods (probably because I eat my new-found food affairs every day for like a month..), and soon got sick of even the tastiest snacks…

Spoonful of delish

Spoonful of delish

My oatmeal prep-time issue did change however, when about a year ago I had my final high school exams. Each written test was 4 hours long, and after taking only some fruit, nuts and a food bar with me for the first one, I knew I needed something with a little more oompf to keep me going; thus, enter the oatmeal. I would get up extra early, pumped only by an extra dose of adrenaline (I was super nervous..) and have enough time to prepare cashew and blueberry oatmeal to take with me. I would then devour it during my test by the spoonful and wash it down with a tumbler of earl grey tea.
But alas, as soon as the exams were over, so ended my oatmeal breakfast habit and stayed buried as a memory…

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Until now..:)

With my work and dance schedule, I need proper food to keep me going. Since oatmeal has never let me down in the past, I rely on it now again to give me sustenance for the day. But since I’m in a work scenario, rather than an exam one, I don’t wake up as easily in the morning.. So how can I make sure I can still eat the wholesome meal I want, and sleep until the latest possible moment? I found my answer thanks to none other than my (Swiss!) boyfriend, of all people: Birchermüesli, more internationally known as overnight oats.

The Swiss invention of Birchermüesli was originally made for patients in hospital, as part of their therapy. The physician, Maximilian Bircher-Benner, created this dish in order in incorporate more fruit in to their diet. Based on something he ate while exploring the Swiss Alps, the original muesli – unlike today’s – consisted mainly of shredded apples; oats, hazelnuts, lemon juice and condensed milk merely complemented the dish. Since then, endless variations have popped up all over the world, but the base remained unchanged: fruit, oats and milk (or yoghurt).

Overnight prep

Overnight prep

By preparing this the night before, it ensured a tasty snack/breakfast for whenever I wanted it; totally stress-free! And, as mentioned in my last post, it really works wonders before exercise!

Now, let’s move on the actual recipe…

Before launching a google search for overnight oat-recipes, I checked out the Oatmeal Artists options. Her creative ideas have been an inspiration for most of my own oatmeal, and this time was no different. One recipe that really jumped out at me was the tea-steeped oatmeal. This is something I had never heard of before..

IMG_0505

The basic recipe was as simple as could be, so the only thing I had to really think about was what tea I wanted to use. Also, in my ongoing quest to up the protein content of everything, I wanted to find a nut butter that would match (I really enjoy the addition of nut butter to my oatmeal, reaping not only amazing flavor but also many nutritional benefits, and after testing a delicious recipe from Peanut Butter Fingers, I knew it could easily be added to overnight oats as well.) But what tea…?

A couple of weeks ago, I found a delicious shortbread cookie. An earl grey and blueberry shortbread cookie to be exact. This buttery cookie gave me new perspectives: earl grey tea and blueberries…match perfectly?! So creative, it works! I was amazed. Even more so, when I remembered my days during my finals, eating oatmeal with blueberries and drinking earl grey tea! It was fate! This exact memory triggered a déjà vu, where I then recalled, that those oats tasted so good, not just by adding blueberries and drinking tea, but also thanks to the creamy, almost buttery flavor of cashew nut butter!
Proud of my accomplishment, I went to the kitchen…

IMG_0506

Earl Grey Oats (serves 1)
(inspired by the oatmeal artist, PBfingers and shortbread cookies)

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup regular oats
  • Earl grey tea bag in 1/4 cup of water (steep for min 1 hour, I used 2 bags)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon cashew nut butter
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract and/or powder
  • 1 tablespoon Quark or Greek yoghurt
  • 1/3 cup Vanilla soy milk (increases creaminess)
  • Brown sugar or maple syrup (to taste..I recently made it without any additional sweeteners, and found it needed something)

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients, and a splash of milk, in a mason jar or Tupperware
  2. Stir well until combined
  3. Add in rest of milk
  4. Cover with lid and shake well
  5. Store in the fridge overnight (or for several hours)
  6. Enjoy!

Let me know if you can think of any other great combinations!

With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

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