Let’s talk mornings.
We hit the snooze button, we stumble out of bed, we make our way cold and bleary-eyed to the kitchen where we immediately pour a bowl of cereal, heat up some oatmeal or slather some toast with peanut butter.
Smoothies can be a nice option too, but definitely not in the winter. In the winter, I go for heartier options such as pancakes, oatmeal, waffles and baked eggs. (Ever try baked eggs with fresh rosemary and goat cheese? You should.)
This apricot vanilla breakfast porridge is a delicious blend of four grains: red quinoa, pearl barley, steel cut oats and oat bran, and will get you out of your boring oatmeal rut and into something a little more… colorful, shall I say?
If you’re already thinking there’s no WAY I have time to make this weird grainy breakfast porridge on weekday morning, you’re wrong! I’ve always been a big fan of make-ahead breakfasts and this is no excuse.
Just simmer the grains together for half an hour on Sunday evenings and then all you have to do during the week is a quick thirty second reheat. It really doesn’t get simpler than that. I love to keep a big tupperware container full of this all week long in the fridge–it makes breakfasts super speedy and delicious!
The grains are simmered with chopped dried apricots, cinnamon and a vanilla bean. You could also swap the apricot for dried cranberries or cherries if you prefer, but I just love how the apricot chunks get all soft and chewy after cooking. It makes me wish I enjoyed them fresh as much as I enjoy them dried.
I like to top my bowl with a little milk, chopped walnuts, pure maple syrup and fresh berries. Almond butter and sliced banana would be great, too!
So….what are you waiting for? Get thee in the kitchen tonight and boil some grains! Your belly will be thankful you did when the alarm goes off tomorrow. And maybe, just maybe, you’ll hit the snooze button one less time.
Apricot Vanilla Breakfast Porridge
serves 2-3 (recipe can easily be doubled)
1/4 cup steel cut oats
1/4 cup red quinoa (or regular quinoa)
2 T pearl barley
2 T oat bran
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 vanilla bean, split down the middle
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
2 1/2 cups water
Combine all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer, cover, and let cook for about thirty minutes or until very thick.
Remove from heat and serve warm with additional toppings (nuts, berries, bananas, milk, brown sugar, maple syrup) or keep in a large covered tupperware container in the fridge for quick weekday breakfasts.
I’ll take a side of bacon, please. And some cake!