Do you like the flavour of Christmas pudding? I absolutely love it and I've been enjoying using it in my cooking over the last few weeks as we get ready for Christmas. It's so easy to replicate by using mixed spice - a pre-ground combination of cinnamon, coriander, dill, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. The addition of the mixed dried fruit also makes this taste Christmassy, especially when you get a bite of lemon or orange peel. Mmmm.
In the summer I got into the habit of making bircher muesli, or overnight oats almost every day - it's so convenient to have a ready-made breakfast waiting for you in the fridge in the morning and I think that this would be especially true on Christmas morning - because who wants to be cooking when there are presents to be opened, champagne to be opened and an enormous meal to prepare later in the day! We've switched to porridge now that the mornings are colder, but sometimes I still like to have them cold for a change. However, if you wanted to use these ingredients in your hot porridge or oatmeal instead I think it would taste gorgeous.
This recipe is really easy to adapt for different dietary requirements. As it is it's vegan but if you need it to be gluten free too just use gluten free oats and if you have a nut allergy in your family then replace the chopped almonds with seeds or use extra dried fruit. Overnight oats are extremely forgiving to make and almost impossible to get wrong! As long as the oats are covered with milk they'll be just fine.
30g chopped almonds
30g mixed dried fruit
30g dried cranberries
1 tsp mixed spice (use a bit less for a milder flavour or replace with ground cinnamon if preferred)
400ml milk (I used almond)
1. Start this the night before you want to eat the oats. Place the oats, almonds, dried fruit, cranberries and mixed spice into a jar or bowl. Stir to combine.
2. Pour over the milk, cover and leave in the fridge overnight.
3. In the morning simply serve with your favourite fruit - blueberries are nice - and some maple syrup if you'd like to sweeten it a little more.