Buckwheat Muesli



Did you miss me?  I decided to take January off from blogging as so many other things were going on. Maybe more on that later! ...... But I'm back now - and one year older!! It was my birthday yesterday and I feel just as young as I did on Saturday - so that's good!


It must be the great food I eat :-D


Here's a good breakfast cereal for you to try and see if it keeps you feeling as young as me!


Its made from buckwheat. Little tiny pyramids - as you can see above. Buckwheat isn't actually a grain but rather a seed and is in the same family of plants as rhubarb.  It is a useful crop to grow as it has a short growing period, producing seeds at around 6 weeks which ripen at 10 - 11 weeks. So its great as a fill-in crop, between other crops.


It has reasonably high protein levels (approx 18%) including all the essential amino acids.  It is also rich in iron, zinc and selenium, and rutin.  Rutin is a bioflavonoid that helps strengthen our blood vessels so it particularly useful for varicose veins, hemorrhoids etc and may lower blood pressure.

In this recipe, I've used raw buckwheat.  You can generally buy it either raw or toasted. When it is toasted, it's often called Kasha.  You can also buy it as a flour...and you may have tried it in buckwheat pancakes for an example.



I like the crunch, texture and chew of it in the cereal. You can obviously change up this recipe to use ingredients you like best, so this is just a canvas recipe -that you can adjust to your own particular tastes. For example, I didn't have sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds one time, so subbed 1 cup of walnuts instead.

Hope you'll give it a go:

Ingredients:
120g or 3/4 cup raw buckwheat
90g or 3/4 cup sunflower seeds
70g or 1/2 cup raisins
70g or 1/2 cup sultanas/golden raisins
40g or 1 cup flaked coconut or 40g or 1/2 cup shredded coconut
35g or 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
20g or 1/2 cup puffed unsweetened brown rice
20g or 1/4 cup ground flax seed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Mix all the ingredients and you are done! As simple as that.   I don't think it needs any oil or sweetener - just pour some non dairy milk/yoghurt on top and add some fruit, which will sweeten it - and enjoy.

Vegan, free from added sugar, gluten, oil, and good source of omega fats.  Good source of fiber.

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Green Tea and Ginger Oatmeal

I've mentioned before on this blog that I don't like the taste of green tea if I'm drinking it. However, I do love all the healing aspects of green tea with its high antioxidant levels, EGCG, anti cancer effects, anti-inflammatory effects etc etc and so I try to cook with it instead of drinking it.


I often boil my rice or quinoa or other grains in water with matcha green tea powder, or use green tea bags in the water. I make a green buddha bowl that I love.....but lately I've been wondering about how else I could incorporate it in my cooking - and I came up with the idea of adding it to my oatmeal water!


Ta Da!  Green Tea and ginger oatmeal was born!  Yes, it has a green tinge to it - but I - and you can get over that!


Its tasty but doesn't taste of green tea! The whole idea.

Here is how I made it:

1 cup water
1 tsp matcha green tea powder or 2 green tea teabags
1/2 cup rolled oats (I used gluten free)
2 tablespoons of ground flax seed
Ginger pieces - to your taste
1/4 cup goldenberries

Add the matcha tea or tea bags to the water in a small saucepan and bring to just below a boil.  Remove the teabags if using.  Add the remaining ingredients and cook for 5 - 10 minutes.  The flax does thicken it so if you prefer runny oatmeal, add some more water.

Serve with additional fruit or ginger on top and non dairy milk, if you choose.  (The ginger I used was rehydrated dried ginger - I just keep some in water in the fridge or you can use crystallized and wash off the excess sugar.)

And to think for my breakfast, I've started the day with the omega 3 fats that I need from the flax seed, plenty of fiber and vitamins from the oats, the healing benefits of green tea, anti-inflammatory effects of ginger, anti oxidants from golden berries...and its only 8am!!!

Hope your new year starts are well as my day has started today.  Wishing you a happy, healthy, and hopeful 2014. xxxx
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Overnight oat berry breakfast parfait



While yesterday's OOO-breakfast is yummy - it is quite sweet, even though it has no added sugar - but the sweetness comes from the bananas and mango.  So I made this version of a 'pretty parfait' - OOBBP, using berries instead and changing the oats a little. If you have a sweeter tooth - you can still use this recipe but go for all strawberries - but I like a bit of tartness so added cranberries as well.


Here's the recipe: 3 servings

1/2 cup strawberries
1/2 cup cranberries (can be frozen)
1 cup gluten free oats
1 cup dairy free milk
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsweetened organic apple sauce

Puree the strawberries and cranberries together until smooth in a food processor.

Place the oats, chia seeds, milk, vanilla and cinnamon in a bowl and stir together.  Add the apple sauce and mix thoroughly.

To assemble the parfait, divide approx. half of the oat mixture between three serving glasses/bowls.  Add a layer of strawberry/cranberry puree using approx. half of the puree.  Add the remainder of the oat mixture to make a third layer, and finally top with the remainder of the strawberry/cranberry mixture.  Top with a sprinkle of oats and chia seeds. I also added a dehydrated apple ring.



Put in the fridge overnight, during which time the oats will soften and thicken.  This will last for 3 days....if you can stop yourself eating them for lunch as well - which is what I did!

Again, this breakfast is giving you a good dose of omega 3 fatty acids from the chia seeds - and I used flax milk as well. I have found a flax milk I really like, called Good Karma Flax milk - only 25 calories  and 1200 mg omega 3 per cup serving.


You can use fresh or frozen fruit for this - and any berries that you like. I think it would be lovely with blackberries and raspberries together.  Or strawberries with cooked rhubarb - yum!

Which do you think is prettier? The mango/banana or the berry parfait?  I'd go with the berry - love that bright red coloring with the neutral colored oats.  
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Overnight Omega 3 Oaty breakfast!

O-O-O breakfast!


I'm not sure if you are like me, but throughout the year, I usually stick to one of two breakfasts with maybe just varying the berries on top:    either my homemade gluten free, sugar free, granola or my homemade GF, sugar free muesli.  I think I just want to get up and not really think about creating something first thing - just reach in the cupboard, pull out my cereal and add a few sprinkles and non dairy milk and start eating.

But then I see all these pretty breakfasts in cookbooks and blogs, and all these smoothies, and I get a bit envious.  The taste of food begins very visually for me, so eating things that look good is important.  And yes, faithful granola and muesli - you do look good - but just not as "pretty" as some other breakfasts out there!

So I had the idea to try making something a bit prettier, but doing it the night before - while dinner is cooking. Then when I get up,  it'll all be ready in the fridge, and I won't even have to add milk!

And thus - two new breakfasts came about - that I made while dinner was cooking. Pretty Parfaits!  Today is the sweet mango banana version.  My Triple O breakfast!


Overnight Omega 3 oaty breakfast!

A lovely combination of oats, mangoes, bananas, flax and chia seeds and non dairy milk make up this overnight breakfast.

Part smoothie, part bircher muesli - a breakfast parfait with plenty of omega 3 essential fatty acids from the flax seeds, the chia seeds and I used flax milk as the non dairy milk!

Make it it in the evening, put it in the fridge and its ready for breakfast in the morning.

Here's the recipe (serves 2):

1 large mango or frozen mango pieces
2 bananas
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1 cup gluten free oats
4 tablespoons chia seeds
1/3 cup flax milk or non-dairy milk


Peel the mango and cut away the flesh from the stone, or defrost if frozen, and add to a food processor with the bananas and ground flaxseed.  Blend until smooth and creamy.

In a bowl, combine the oats, chia seeds and non dairy milk, stirring well.

Pour half of the mango banana mix in the bottom of two glasses or bowls.  Top with the oat mix, and then add the remaining mango mix as a top layer.  Sprinkle with oats or chia seeds to decorate. Refrigerate overnight.  Serve cold.

Don't try and keep this more than overnight, as the banana in it begins to go a little brown.


This is a wonderful way to start your day with a great dose of omega 3 fatty acids from the flax and chia.  All too often our omega 6: omega 3 ratio is too low in omega 3s, so gives you a good dose in your first meal of the day.  Omega 3s are anti-inflammatory with lots of benefits to your health.

I used white chia seeds in this recipe as I think they look nicer, but you can use black ones instead. Nutritionally, there isn't a difference.

Tomorrow's pretty parfait is a berry parfait instead.  Stay tuned.

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Health benefits of flax seeds

Here's a short video from nutritionfacts.org about adding more flax into your life (!) and its benefits: from extending your menstrual cycle, to being a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, to reducing breast cancer risk,  to controlling prostate enlargement......

I often use them as a substitute for eggs - 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed with 3 tablespoons of water is the equivalent to one egg. Leave the mixture for a few minutes until it goes gooey, then use it in place of  eggs in baking.



It's best to eat flaxseeds ground. If you eat them whole, they will likely just pass through your system.  Store them in an air tight container to reduce oxidation of the oils and try adding them to your cereal and baked goods.  Also, see last week's blog post of making flaxseed milk!

What's your favorite way to incorporate flaxseeds into your diet?
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Making Flax Seed Milk

Continuing in my non-dairy vegan milk posts (oat, almond, banana, brown rice recipes), today I made milk using flax seeds.


You can get brown or golden flax seeds - both are an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants.  The flavor is somewhat stronger with the brown seeds so for milk, I recommend golden flax seeds.

Here is the recipe:

1/4 cup organic golden flaxseeds
4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon of maple syrup or other sweetener (optional)

Place the flaxseeds and water in a high powered blender and blend for 3 minutes.


Strain the liquid through nut bag or double thickness cheesecloth, squeezing out the milk.

As seed milk tends to be a little bitter, taste the milk first, but you may want to add a little maple syrup or stevia to the milk to suit your own taste.

Store in the refrigerator and use within a week.
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