Magical Breakfast Cream- Notes on Self-Experimentation

Magical Breakfast Cream with jars of home made yogurt

I like food.  Cooking and baking from scratch offers the same satisfaction as sewing my own clothing.  I can customize, experiment, tweak, and I constantly look for ways to create more nutritious, delectable foods.  It doesn’t always work out, but my husband is a very understanding man.  He once ate carrot gravy, without a sniffle.

The last few months, however, I’ve found myself listlessly making the same cheap meals repeatedly, bored by the menus and restricted by careful budgeting.  I thought to try going on the Ration- eating the same restricted diets Brits ate during WW2.  I kept close tabs on our food consumption for a few weeks and came to the conclusion we eat less fat, less meat, and more vegetables than those on the Ration.

So much for that idea.

I found Mireille Guiliano’s French Women Don’t Get Fat at the Library and took it home, expecting a cookbook.  Mireille breaks down traditional French ideas regarding food, and explains how to apply that to your daily cooking/eating.  She expounds portion control, eating seasonal fruits and vegetables, and preparing balanced meals while allowing yourself the pleasure of delicious and sometimes fattening foods. Of course, the book has recipes, but I find the philosophies of food much more inspiring.

One tenet in particular caught my attention- no multi-tasking while eating.  She outlines how to sit at a table and only eat, allowing yourself to savor the textures and flavors of your food.  No standing up, no TV, no blogging.  In the same vein, she discusses the importance of presentation for heightening the enjoyment of your meal.  Mireille asks “Would you rather wash extra dishes or be fat?” and I had to laugh.   While it’s primarily a health/weight-related book, I’m finding I enjoy cooking and eating again.

First, I tried Magical Breakfast Cream.  I don’t usually love plain yogurt, but now look forward to this every morning, and sometimes make it as a snack.


    NUT & CEREAL MIX (enough for 7 days)

  • 1/2 cup (1-1/2 ounces) toasted walnuts
  • 2 cups (4 ounces) Original Shredded Wheat or other sugarless cereal

  • 1/2 cup (3 ounces) 0% or 2% Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon good olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • scant 3 tablespoons (1/2 ounce) Nut & Cereal Mix
  • Juice & pulp of half a lemon or orange (my favorite)

In a small food processor, grind the walnuts and cereal. Transfer to a covered container and refrigerate.
To serve, spoon the yogurt into an individual serving bowl. Stir in the oil first, then the honey, creating a lighter, slightly sweeter yogurt. Top with the Nut & Cereal Mix, sprinkle the lemon juice over top, then stir it all up. Serve and savor, one small bite at a time.

I use oat bran, walnuts, no oil (though I have a flask of flaxseed oil to use), and oranges.  After three weeks of eating this and cutting down on two “baddies,” I feel lovely.  I’m full until lunch time, too.  My measurements are finally back to pre-holiday (way back before Thanksgiving) and some of my more recently made garments need taking in.  

But mostly, it’s really delicious and I had to share the recipe.   My husband (son of a cheese-maker) learned to make my yogurt from milk.  This means less packaging, and less expense as milk is cheaper than yogurt.  I might persuade him to guest-post on yogurt making…


  1. I am glad you found some good recipes that you enjoy. I would love to see a post on the cosmetics and such you use. I know you use the oatmeal mask and the natural deodorant. But I was recently looking at Besame, Julia Hewett and other vintage style, natural make-ups and it is like there is this whole world out there I haven't explored. New Vintage Lady did a great series of posts on her haircare but they were more Black hair oriented. How do you stay so cute Down Under?

  2. Heh heh heh. Mostly cowering in my house until late afternoon, copious amounts of sunscreen, hats, and sun jackets. I might do some more posts on cosmetics, but I think a lot of my "beauty" regime is tied up in my "health" habits so it's hard to separate. I use a Dead Sea salt moisturizer for everything, translucent powder on my face.

  3. I also love to cook and avoid processed food wherever possible, my little treats are things like the home-made lemon curd I posted about in february!!!! Your breakfast sounds very yummy!!!! X

  4. This all sounds wonderful. I noticed the book too, and wondered what it was like.My Dad has been making yoghurt for decades, and finally got me started last year. It is easy, just takes a little time. I'd love to see a guest-post by your husband on how he makes it. Your yoghurt jars look much nicer than what I've been using, 1 qrt mason jars with the metal screw top lids.

  5. Please do tell us how to make yoghurt from milk! Without buying a specific machine, if possible. ALSO, what to do with the failed batches! I read in Tightwad Gazette about this, but I don't have a place to easily do the temperature thing – any ideas welcomed!

  6. My mom used to make yoghurt… we had a yoghurt maker (basically a large bottle warmer ;) ). The only trick I recall was having the live cultures and keeping it at a good temperature.That book sounds interesting and alien ;)… I don't think it's actually possible for me to enjoy eating that much. And it's not because I was brought up on processed crap (or eat crap, though I'm sure I don't eat as well as you), I just don't enjoy most flavours that much…

  7. Your yoghurt seems delicious: good try!About the book, I just browse quickly the autor's web site and ad some big laugh!!! Trust me, most idea about French are more myth than anything else ;-)What the book tell seems to common sense to me… I do this all time since a long time! Just let me share some advices and tricks: Always sit to eat, I mean at a table with plate, glass, knife, spoon… (even alone);Always eat a complete meal (vegetable + fish or , milk or yoghurt or cheese, fruit, coffe if you like it and you can add some little things here or there);Always eat 3, or 4 meat each day (breakfast in the morning, lunch around 12PM, snack with tea or water and fruits juice and some bread with butter, or chocolate or cake, or what you want around 17PM -take a break at work if needeed- and dinner);Think fresh and local and season for fruits and vegetables (with few exception like orange and banana);Eat what you WANT and only what you WANT to eat (If you want only chocolate for the 17PM snack, go for it, you probably need it and you will eat fruits next time or during dinner, relax! ;-)Stop eating when you are no longer hungry, even if you plate is still NOT empty (you probably need not so much… it's the very difficult part to be able to stop, but if you don't all these not needeed food will go on your hips, you know what I mean ;-) (Of course, when you have a nice luch or dinner with friends or somethings special, you can eat too much! you will eat only water and perhaps yoghurt or fruits for the next meal no doubt ;-)Don't forget to walk half an hour each day and that's all you can forgot the diet and other things…Just have fun !!!Well, speaking of french recipes, french is not really big, byt there are a lot of various recipes and a lot of various food habits…I had never share recipes, or write something about it on my blog, I always thought no one can be interested in … but perhaps I was wrong and I should share some recipes and food habits on my blog ?!I enjoy your blog and like your sewing.

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