Across the Pond

When I studied in London in spring 2005 and spring 2007, my grandparents would always ask me how things were going “across the pond” when they emailed or called.  Consequently, it has become one of my favorite ways to refer to things that I experienced in the UK whenever I have the chance.  True, I don’t get to use it often in conversation but I take a certain amount of glee in dropping comments like, “You know, they call crosswalks ‘zebra crossings’ across the pond,” when I have the chance.

Or, “Muesli was my favorite cereal when I lived across the pond and I’ve never been able to find anything that tastes remotely like it in the States.”

Until I was browsing 101 Cookbooks the other day and stumbled upon what must be one of the most fabulous muesli recipes in the world.  Rolled oats, almonds, two kinds of seeds and four kinds of fruit, all rolled in honey and toasted to perfection.  What’s not to like?

Answer: Nothing. It’s delicious.

And if you don’t believe me, I’ll happily have you over for breakfast to argue about it over a bowl.

Turns out that the sunflower seeds are what give this cereal its unique flavor. That's what I was missing in the boxed brands.

Honey-Toasted Fruit Muesli Recipe (with a couple of variations)

Preheat the oven to 300F degrees.

Put 6 cups rolled oats into a large bowl. Add 1 cup unsalted sunflower seeds, 1 cup slivered almonds, 1 cup shredded coconut and 2 tablespoons sesame seeds. Stir to combine.

Heat 3/4 cup honey and 4 tablespoons vegetable oil in a saucepan over low heat. Pour the warm honey mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until they are well coated.

Spread the mixture on across two (rimmed) baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Add a generous amount of dried apricots, apples, figs (all diced), craisins and/or whatever dried fruit is available. Toss to combine. Store the muesli in an airtight container.

Makes 12 servings.

Note: All twelve servings are best eaten with a Beatles album playing.

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