I’m really excited to share this breakfast post with you – partly because I have re-discovered the magic of home-made. Despite my best efforts to return to a forgotten and slower way of living, there are still some fast living, processed luxuries that I continue to indulge in. Eating un-seasonally, reverting into the man-made arms of my kitchen aid and devouring European yogurt on a regular basis are some of these things.
Yogurt is one of those staple foods, consumed by all that is too often taken for granted – due to its constant availability. In times preceding the convenience of supermarkets, yogurt was a simple, rare luxury. A hand and home-made process which took days to create and time to ferment. I think it’s time we revert back to the past, to learn to create and appreciate the everyday foods we eat and take for granted.
In my opinion, there are few things better than the home-made. It’s an amazing feeling to be able to say that you took the time and care to make your own yogurt from scratch…and an even more amazing feeling to say that it tastes utterly delicious and could rival any store bought version.
Don’t ask why you would make your own yogurt – rather, ask why you wouldn’t make it. Made with good, organic whole milk and a dollop of full fat yogurt, this yogurt takes less than an hour to make, then a day to ferment. And in 24 short hours I was greeted with the most delicious, silky, fresh and creamy yogurt perfect to be consumed with just about anything.
Granola Parfaits with Home-made Chamomile Yogurt and Edible Flowers are a simple yet luxurious morning pleasure…and are comprised of layers of granola, yogurt, fresh berries and edible flowers. The home-made yogurt is infused with the slight flavour of chamomile and is as rich, smooth and slightly tangy as you can imagine, reminiscent of a good quality European – which can often be so hard to find.
And the granola is home-made and easy to make too. It’s a one-bowl, stove top version that literally takes less than 10 minutes to make. No need for the hassle of mixing ingredients in several bowls, using and lining numerous baking trays or even switching them round in a hot oven. Blessedly, you can still make these parfaits using store bought ingredients – but the home-made touches just add that little bit more of satisfaction and finesse.
These Granola Parfaits with Home-made Chamomile Yogurt and Edible Flowers render indulgence on so many levels and restore natural home-made balance and beauty in my diet. They are wonderfully flamboyant yet relatively low maintenance at the same time…the yogurt and granola can be made days before and stored until required, just add fresh fruit and pretty flowers before serving.
- ¼ gallon / 950 ml / 32 fl. oz whole milk
- 2 chamomile tea bags
- 40 g / 1.4 oz. plain full fat yogurt
- Scant 2 cups rolled oats
- ¼ cup almonds, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup pecans, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp. shaved coconut
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 3 tbsp. coconut oil
- 4 tbsp. honey or sweetener of choice
- Home-made chamomile yogurt
- Punnet fresh blueberries
- Edible flowers (pansies, nasturtiums and carnations)
- In a large stainless-steel pot, heat the milk and chamomile tea bags over low heat until you see tiny bubbles begin to foam at the edges, or until the milk reaches 185 F / 85 C on a candy thermometer, roughly 15 to 20 minutes. Turn off and remove from the heat. Let the milk cool down until it reaches 109 F / 42 C on a candy thermometer, about 30 minutes. Remove the tea bags then whisk in the yogurt and cover the pot with cheesecloth. Let the yogurt sit in a warm spot to thicken for about 24 hours.
- When the yogurt has reached a consistency you like, strain it through a cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve to remove any risen liquid then transfer it into a sealed jar and refrigerate. Or, if you prefer a thicker yogurt, strain it in a fine-mesh strainer lined with 4 to 5 layers of cheesecloth, then refrigerate. Serve chilled, or store it in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- For the stove-top granola, dry-toast the oats, almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, coconut and cinnamon in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. In the center, make a well and add in the coconut oil and honey. Continue to stir for another 5 minutes, making sure the mixture is well coated and beginning to toast and turn brown. Once browned, remove from the heat and allow the granola to cool before transferring to a lidded jar or container. The granola can be stored for up to 2 weeks.
- When ready to assemble, begin to layer the parfaits using the granola, yogurt and berries. Garnish with edible flowers and serve with honey.