Posts Tagged With: porridge

Himalayan Porridge

 

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Himalayan Porridge

We are a long, long way from the Himalayas at the moment.  We can see the beautiful blue Mediterranean from our terrace!  There are a few hills, but thats it for undulations.  It is winter here in Murcia though and it can get a little chilly in the mornings so this very special porridge has kept Jane and I nice and cosy.

This recipe has made it’s way to the Beach House all the way from the high Himalayas in northwest India, a tiny village set below some of the most beautiful mountain ranges imaginable.  Our wonderful friend Mary is spending the winter up there with her new husband Arjun.  Mary is braving  -20oC weather conditions and much snow in a small traditional house.  The peace and beauty of the place is truly magical.

This porridge is a recipe that they make together regularly to warm their cockles; simple, cheap and very hearty.  This porridge sticks to the ribs all day and acts as central heating for the body way up there in the mountain airs.

I visited the Himalayas a couple of years ago and was blown away by the beauty, diversity and scale of this mountain range.  I had the pleasure of meeting Mary in the small village that she now calls home, but luckily visited in the summertime when it is snow free!

Up in the Himalayas, near the source of the Ganges, 2010

Up in the Himalayas, near the source of the Ganges, 2010

This porridge is super high energy food and will set anybody up for the day ahead.  Nuts, honey, oats and coconut mean that it’s a very tasty treat too and the spices add a very Indian flavour.  Most of the ingredients must be soaked the night before, this makes them swell up and release more nutrients, it also makes them easier to digest and cook.

We didn’t have cashews for the recipe, so we used hazelnuts instead.  Cashews will certainly give it more of Himalayan feel, they are freely available up there.

Remember to cook your porridge on a low heat and stir regularly.  Good porridge needs good lovin’ and attention.  No lumps, nice and smooth.

We have made this recipe dairy free by using soya yoghurt and milk and it is equally delicious.

Over to Mary, way up their in the rare airs……

The Bits

2 mugs of organic oats, lots of whole organic milk, 1 small handful of freshly grated coconut, 4 cardamoms, 1 small stick of cinnamon, 1 full handful of organic sultanas, honey (to taste), handful of cashew nuts chopped and roasted (without using oil), live Greek yogurt

Do It

Leave all the ingredient’s (bar honey, nuts and yogurt) soaking in milk overnight. In the morning add more milk and simmer as slowly as possible (this is one for the bottom of an Arga) for 30 minutes using one of those flat metal mats to diffuse the flame.

Pour onto a dinner plate and spread evenly. Wait for 5 minutes then cover with a thin’ish layer of live curd (organic thick Greek yogurt will suffice), drizzle honey on top and sprinkle with halved roasted cashew nuts.  Serve the liquid from the coconut first to aid digestion. The nuts and coconut take a number of hours to digest so it’s very satisfying for us poor sadhus!

Serve

Allow to cool (remember the three bears story!!!!) and top with more nuts and raisins.

Himalayan Porridge (by the pool!)

Himalayan Porridge (by the pool in a tapas bowl!)

We Love It!

Just thinking about Mary and Arjun sitting around their fire and eating this breakfast fills us with the magic of travel and the beauty of world.

Foodie Fact

Oats are a hardy grain that flourishes in the worst of soil conditions.  Even though most oats are hulled this does not remove their bran and germ, this maintains their nutritional and fibre properties.  If sustenance and energy is what you are looking for, you cannot beat an oat.  They are also great for people suffering from diabetes or heart conditions due to some unique antioxidants.

Mary at her tiger pool up in the Himalayas

Mary at her tiger pool up in the Himalayas

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Breakfast, Recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Raw Honey and Almond Porridge

Jane making porridge (with pink dressing gown)

Sweet and comforting and slightly warm (and still technically raw).  Jane whipped this porridge up and it proved a real treat.

Raw foods are normally vegan organic wholefoods that haven’t been heated above 46oC.  This porridge is heated with warm water or milk, just enough to give the groats a nice creamy texture.  I love this, as I quite like cold porridge anyway, it sits in the fridge until you need it and comes back to life with a little glug of liquid and a stir.  I’d eat this even if I wasn’t a raw-er.

Just because we are raw doesn’t mean we’ve got rid of our need for sweetness.  Jane has been craving oats cakes and chocolate (always), I have been eyeing the crispy golden chips at work.  But we are both dedicated to this months rawness, we love the idea of this experiment and challenge.

We will be eating this porridge for breakfast and for dessert and, as I mentioned, it will sit happily in the fridge until you have the need for a bowl of goodness. In fact this is sweet two times, with the raisins and honey. Jane has that wicked sweet tooth!

Oat groats are the raw version of rolled oats, which are heated during the process and have had some of the goodness removed. Oat groats are simply the hulled grain.

Next time we makes this we will be using agave syrup as a sweetener and then raw molasses, maybe add some coconut (Jane and her friend shiny Sava have scoffed it all today!) or other nuts. Its a method that demands experimentation.

I realise that some of this raw food has alot in it! Its quite specialised stuff and you cannot avoid a trip to the health store if you would like to go raw.  It would be very limiting and as we all know, health stores equal tasty prices.  It’s well worth the investment in quality though, we have an apple cider vinegar which is almost my new favourite thing (its contains the mother!) coming just behind the dried seaweed.  This diet is opening us up to so many new and interesting food stuffs and already completely changing the way we eat and approach food.

Cinnamon is not necessarily raw, but…c’est la vie!

Raw Honey and Almond Porridge

The Bits
2 cups soaked oat groats, 1 tbsp brown linseeds, 2 cups raw almond milk (or water), 2 teas flaxseed oil (we used local Welsh rape seed oil Blodyn Au, which is delicious), handful of raisins, handful of chopped almonds (soaked overnight, they will swell to twice there size), 1 tbsp really good honey, 1 tsp cinnamon,

Do It
Soak your groats for around 12 hours, they wont sprout. Put into a blender and blitz until smooth, like a thick mash. Add the raisins, honey, oil, seeds and cinnamon and blend again. Then add the heated almond milk (heat just until steam begins to rise) and blend to a smooth puree. Stir in the raisins and nuts and serve as soon as you can.  Slightly warm.

Serve

Topped with a couple of nuts and another sprinkle of cinnamon.  If you have some soya yoghurt, you may like to spoon a little on top (if its a special occasion).

We Love It!

Soaked nuts are brilliant!  We recommend it highly, the have great flavlour, double in size and are healthier.

Foodie Fact

Oat groats are one of the least processed grains, they are rough and take a long time to digest, keeping you nice and full.  They are also full of protein.

Categories: Breakfast, Raw Food, Vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

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