With the weather starting to turn a little colder now, a warming bowl of porridge for breakfast is beautifully nourishing and wonderful for your digestion.
Soaking your grains assists in improving their digestibility and nutrient content (Arneja et al, 2015; Ahmed et al, 2013). If you soak whole quinoa overnight, then drain and leave in your strainer over a bowl, covered, in warm conditions, you can see little tails appearing from the sprouting process, which indicates it is germinating, and is much easier to digest this way.
In Western countries, dietary guidelines often tell you “what” to eat, but not how best to eat to support digestion. Having the right balance of ingredients in your meal, a moderate quantity of food, and eating foods cooked and warm, all assist with digestion. It is also important to eat regular meals. Having a warm, light, easy to digest breakfast, and not rushing it down as you run out the door, but rather sitting down and enjoying and chewing your food properly, will result in much better digestion. This is often forgotten in our modern, busy society!
Try this breakfast when you have time – it could also be prepared the night before, and then heated up when needed the next morning. Don’t forget to enjoy it.
Ingredients per person:
- 1/4 cup of a mix of quinoa and millet flakes (I use about 3/4 quinoa and 1/4 millet. You could also use brown rice flakes in your mix, or use whole quinoa and millet, ground in a small spice grinder. You may need more water with this.)
- 1/4 cup of your preferred milk – e.g. organic, non-homogenised whole milk, goats milk, unsweetened almond milk etc
- handful of organic raisins
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- Optional, to serve – organic, whole milk, unsweetened yoghurt, and/or ground linseeds, sunflower and pumpkin seeds (these can be freshly ground in a small spice grinder for the best nutrient content, and should be stored in the fridge), extra ground cinnamon
- Soak your quinoa and millet overnight (or around 8 hours) in water, with a dash of apple cider vinegar if you have some, or just in plain water, covered, if possible. It is best to rinse the quinoa before soaking to reduce bitterness.
- Place your quinoa and millet in a small saucepan (if soaked, drained).
- Add in your raisins.
- Cover with water, around 1/2 cup per person.
- Bring to the boil over moderate heat, covered, then lower the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring constantly. Add extra water as needed, keeping a porridge consistency.
- Add your preferred milk and the cinnamon, and warm through, continuing to stir.
- Pour into your favourite bowl, and if you like, top with 1 tbsp yoghurt per person, an extra sprinkle of cinnamon, and a tsp of ground linseeds, sunflower and pumpkin seeds.
- Enjoy with a cup of your favourite hot beverage!
Saleh, A. S.M., Zhang, Q., Chen, J. and Shen, Q. (2013), Millet Grains: Nutritional Quality, Processing, and Potential Health Benefits. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, 12: 281–295. doi: 10.1111/1541-4337.12012