Friday, September 15, 2006

please porridge hot

we've been experiencing some blessedly cooler mornings, and this makes me wanna snuggle up to a warm breakfast that soothes me from the inside. ahhhhh. :)
our fabulous instructor at Bauman College ~ Lizette, shared with us the idea to make porridge with hot water and ground flax seeds.
i've been tinkering, and this is a recipe i like a lot:

Please Porridge Hot (why not)

In the coffee/spice/nut Grinder:
2 tbsp flax seeds
1 tbsp chia seeds
1/4 tsp cinnamon
a dash cayenne (warm it up!)
a dash powdered stevia (or use the liquid dropper later)
a dash sea salt

In the Toasting Pan, on low heat:
chopped nuts and/or seeds of your choice
dried shredded coconut

In the Blender:

all of the above: the ground seed-spice mixture,
the toasted seeds/nuts & coconut
a bowlful of boiling water (you know: more if you like it soupy, less if you like it thicker.
obviously this will depend on the bowls in your kitchen. . )
3-4 dried Mission Figs, chopped

Blend till well combined.

In the Bowl:
adjust seasoning, sweetness and soupiness.
add just a tiny bit of butter (this *makes* it!!)
a dash of cinnamon for presentation

possible mix-ins (endless):
add a little ripe banana in the blender
cocoa powder
dried apple, chopped
agave instead of, or in addition to, the stevia

it is top priority for me to keep meals as low on the glycemic index as possible. that makes this a nice satisfying alternative to grains such as oatmeal for breakfast. and that's why i use figs as opposed to bananas, and stevia instead of other sweeteners. this recipe also gives the great benefits of flax and chia: omega 3's and fiber. with the nuts and butter, this meal will sustain you longer into your morning than sugar-rush cereal or granola (and, of course, all the other sugary "food" you could have for breakfast.. )

it's also just-plain yummy!! and this is the best reason to make this for breakfast. :-D

(one last note is that i always use and recommend organic ingredients.
and i use raw, organic butter from happy grass-fed cows. it's alive! and transmits that vitality to you. :) it also still has the enzymes that help in the digestion of dairy, which can be a challenge for a lot of us! ;) ~me included! grass-fed = very important. i could go on and on about this. not only are the cows happy (which travels in their milk), they eat the diet they were *designed* to eat, which makes them healthy, and their milk SO GOOD FOR YOU!! it is sunshine, and green grass. so beautiful. for facts, figures, graphs and charts, and listings of where you can find grass-fed dairy in your area, check this out:
ok. that's all. ;-D)

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The Best-I've-Ever-Made Pancakes

whoa. from the very first "testcake" i was pancake-O-ing .. for hours.
ok: i admit it. i ate these pancakes, one at a time, hot off the skillet, for hours.
lucky my companion-in-brunch had to scoot off to work, or there woulda beena fight over those last pancakes.
woulda been ugly.

OK!! on to the recipe! so you may pancake-O in your own kitchen.

i used _The_All_New_Joy_of_Cooking_'s Basic Buttermilk Pancakes recipe as my guide. then i played:

The Best-I've-Ever-Made Pancakes
(_Joy_ says, "about twelve 5-inchers"
.. only the skillet knows how many 3-inchers...)

Dry Ingredients:
in 1/2 cup: an eyeball-mixture of less regular oats (not quick-cook), to (*key!!*) uncooked polenta,
in second 1/2 cup: stoneground cornmeal (might i stress the importance of Organic ingredients here)
in third 1/2 cup: a mix of the same cornmeal with whole grain spelt, and whole wheat flours

(i was just using what i found in the freezer. it worked!!)

1 1/2 tsp baking powder (non aluminum)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
a light sprinkle of powdered Stevia (essential? unsure. .)
a sprinkling of chia seeds (pretty.)

Wet Ingredients:
3/4 cup organic whole milk yogurt
1/2 cup homemade kefir (unsweetened = very important)
1/4 cup filtered water
about 3 tbsp unsalted organic butter, melted
2 large free range eggs

In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients.
In another bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients.
Pour the wet into the dry, and gently whisk, just until combined.
(the batter was relatively thick, and full of big-ish air bubbles.)
On a medium-hot skillet (cast iron is great!) melt some organic butter (or coconut oil.. !) and fry those babies up!
till they bubble on the first side, then flip them only once.
silver-dollar-size worked well for me.

crispy, very moist, and light, with a magical crunch! they can be prepared savory, or sweet.
my Official Taste Tester said the winning combo of toppings on a hot-off-the-skillet cake was:
a little more butter, of course :-P
a dollop of unsweetened whole milk yogurt
chunks of in-season ripe organic strawberries
freshly toasted walnut pieces
just a dot or two of agave nectar !
but, he said, you don't want to put *too much* of the toppings on there, because the cake is so good itself!
or ~(he said) eat 'em plain!! delectable.

i enjoyed them with unsweetened apple sauce and walnut pieces, too.

play around and lemme know what you think!
pancakes = the ingredient options are endless; but you know a good one as soon as you put the first bite in your mouth.

photo: a fabric ode to fried-cake affection