Autumn porridge with seeds & apple
I love this autumnal porridge with apples from the garden (we have a glut right now). Add Ceylon cinnamon, a grated apple and a dessertspoon or two of protein powder and you have a slow-burn meal that takes you through to lunch no problem. I love spices and what they do for your body so if I have time I also put in a pinch of ground cloves – a reminder of my childhood and my mother, who made the best apple tarts, always with a few cloves. Instead of the apple stirred into the porridge you can also top the finished product with a cupful of thawed or fresh mixed berries.
For 1 big eater (if portion size seems too big, reduce oats by 1/3 and protein powder to 1 rounded dsp)
Just under 1/2 mug (about 40g) gluten-free porridge oats or (if you are not gluten-sensitive, normal porridge/jumbo oats/oatmeal)
1 tsp Ceylon (Sri Lankan) cinnamon
1-2 dsp additive-free protein powder (I like a mix of sprouted rice protein and pea protein or Nu Zest brand but for dairy-eaters grass-fed whey protein concentrate like Solgar Vanilla Whey-To-Go is also good and some people prefer it)
1 apple – organic if possible
1 heaped tbs (2 heaped dsp) mixed raw milled seeds (get a blend that includes flax/chia)
Optional: pure stevia drops to sweeten (if you are only just weaning off sugar) or use a little xylitol or erythritol/stevia blend (from health shops)
1.If you think of it the night before, soak your oats in boiling water – cover the oats so you have at least 1.5cm of water on top, they will drink it all up. This reduces the cooking time A LOT and makes them easier to digest. If you forget to soak the oats overnight, just pour on boiling water when you get up.
2.Bring the oats to the boil then simmer until a lot of the grains have broken down.
3. Grate your apple (unless its organic, peel it first) into the porridge, add the cinnamon, protein powder and (if using) your stevia drops/xylitol etc. Give it a good stir. At this point it will probably be too thick so add some boiling water, give it all a good stir and pour into your bowl.
4.Top with the seeds and get stuck in.
Why this is good for you:
Oats and apples are a rich source of prebiotic fibre that feeds your good gut bacteria. These bugs are vital for digestive, skin, hormonal and mental health (in fact every aspect of your health). If the apples are not organic they are usually contaminated with agri-chemicals toxic to humans. You can read about contaminants in apples here: https://www.ewg.org/release/apples-top-ewgs-dirty-dozen . Oats are naturally low in gluten (their only gluten being contamination by wheat or barley). Low/no gluten foods are easier to digest. In all grains, beans,and pulses there are problematic proteins called lectins that are reduced by soaking/sprouting. This is why some people tolerate sourdough wheat bread but not other forms of wheat bread. The sourdough fermentation process reduces or lectins, including gluten, by over 99%. Many plants contain lectins – they are the plants defence against being eaten and digested!!
Protein: Adding protein from (seeds, additive-free protein powder) slows your digestion. This gives you a steady feed of energy rather than a quick burst, followed by feeling exhausted, down or hungry. Buy a raw milled seed mix or grind your own blend (flax, pumpkin, sunflower, sesame) using an electric coffee/spice grinder. Keep in an airtight glass jar in the fridge.
Spices: Ceylon/Sri Lanka Cinnamon (but not products labelled simply “cinnamon”) helps balance your blood sugar and is a powerful antioxidant. So if you want to lower inflammation, be a healthy weight, slow the ageing process, balance hormones and maintain a good, stable mood this sort of breakfast is a winner.
There are of course, some people who do much better on a grain-free diet altogether, but this is a more personalised area of nutrition aimed at resolving specific health issues.