Muesli or Bircher Muesli to be more precise was developed around 1900 by Swiss physician Maximilian Bircher-Benner for patients in his hospital. Today’s packaged version is intended for longer shelf life and so is mostly made with raw rolled oats (sometimes other whole grains also) and other ingredients including nuts, seeds and dried fruits. The original Bircher Muesli was made with dry rolled oats soaked overnight with water and lemon juice, and then eaten with fresh grated apple, a little condensed milk and nuts.
If you’re like me and didn’t grow up with Muesli and Granola you would be forgiven in thinking they’re more or less the same. Granola is a North American invention and is a little different though it usually contains oats along with nuts, seeds and dried fruit. It can also be made from barley, rye or any other suitable grain but the main difference is that it is tossed with a little fat (usually oil or butter), sweetened with honey or maple syrup and baked until the ingredients form crunchy clusters.
I love Muesli and I think almost everyone who reads this blog knows I love bread, so I thought it was a wonderful idea when Karen of Baking Soda announced that the Bread Baking Babes bread for this month was Muesli Bread Rolls! The chosen recipe is from the book Bread by Dean Brettschneider. Bread is always a good thing in my world, and it’s even better if I can make it a little “healthier”
These Muesli Bread Rolls are full of flavour even though a bit dense in texture. You could eat these for breakfast and they’re particularly good toasted. Otherwise try them with a thin wedge of some good cheese for a really good accompaniment to your morning coffee. Even better, use these rolls to make a filling sandwich for lunch!
For once, I was happy that I didn’t have to make a load of substitutions for ingredients (I did use date syrup instead of molasses but that was all) because I actually had all the Muesli additions in stock.
The recipe mentions using dried apricot and chocolate chips but I would suggest using one or the other for best flavour. I made this bread a couple of times using either one or the other and I would personally opt for the apricots over the chocolate in this bread even though I love chocolate. I just feel the fruit does so much better taste-wise, in this bread.
Oh, and you don’t have to shape these rolls square though I thought they looked interesting this way , not to mention it is so much easier to just cut them and put them on the baking sheet. You can shape them into round rolls or even a single loaf instead of rolls and it works just as well. I made my first attempt at these rolls by shaping the dough into a loaf but I don’t have any photographs of that.
Muesli Bread Rolls
- 2 3/4 cups strong bread flour
- 1/3 cup wholemeal or whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup jumbo rolled oats
- 2 3/4 tsps instant dry yeast
- 2 tsps salt
- 1 1/2 tbsps date syrup (or molasses)
- 1 tbsp honey
- 4 tsps olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/3 cup walnut pieces (chopped small)
- 3 tbsps flaxseeds
- 2 1/4 tbsps sesame seeds
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup dried apricots cut into pieces
- 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (optional)
- 1 cup jumbo rolled oats to decorate
- Place flours, oats, yeast, salt and wet ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, combine everything into a dough. Tip dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 15 minutes, resting it for 1 minute every 2-3 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic (not wet). Or else do the whole thing in your kitchen machine like I did. Check dough throughout kneading for stickiness; add a little more water or flour if necessary to achieve a soft dough that’s not too firm.
- Add walnuts, seeds, dried fruit and chocolate (if using). Knead everything into the dough till l well incorporated into it. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for approximately 1 1/2, until dough has doubled in size. Gently knock back dough in bowl by folding it back onto itself several times. Cover again and leave for a another 30 minutes.
- Tip dough upside down onto a lightly floured work surface. Sprinkle flour over top of dough (which was on the bottom of the bowl). Very carefully turn dough over and gently flatten the dough to 2cm (3/4 in) thickness. Using a dough scraper cut dough into 7cm (2 3/4") squares. Brush the tops with water and sprinkle entire surface of each roll with rolled oats, pressing down gently so they stick to the dough.
- Place rolls on a lightly greased or parchment lined baking sheet leaving enough gap between them(they will spread and rise). Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let them prove for 30-45 minutes, depending on room temperature. Bake them at 230C (450F) for 20-25 minutes until they’re done. Let them cool on a rack.
The Bread Baking Babes are –
Though the Bread Baking Babes (BBB) are a closed group and from this month on we’re joined by two new Babes – Karen & Judy.
You may not be a member of the core group but you’re most welcome to bake with us as a Bread Baking Buddy and here’s how it works.
The Kitchen of the Month this month is Karen’s and the recipe for this month’s bread is on her blog. Bake the Granary Bread according to that recipe and post it on your blog before the 28th of this month. Make sure you mention the Bread Baking Babes and link to her BBB post in your own post.
Then e-mail Karen with your name and the link to the post, or leave a comment on her blog post with this information. She will then do a Buddy round-up for this month on her blog and also send you a BBB badge for this bread that you can then add to your post on your blog.