I always know when Autumn is drawing in because I get an urge to change my breakfast from a protein smoothie or yogurt and fruit to the warming comfort of porridge.
I wanted to share with you how to make your porridge super nutritious.
Many people think it’s healthier to make porridge with water. In actual fact the protein from milk helps to balance blood sugar levels for longer. Choose organic dairy milk or a nut/seed milk such as almond milk.
Porridge bought from shops is often laden with sugar. Avoid sugar as much as possible if you want to stay healthy.
Oats have a natural sweetness and particularly if you use almond milk, no additional sweetness may be necessary. However here are my favourites. (They are the least processed and have less impact on our blood sugar levels than refined sugar)…..Unrefined coconut sugar, Maple syrup, Carob or date syrup, Molasses, and if you can find a raw locally produced honey that would be great as processed honey is pretty much the same as sugar.
I mentioned protein balances blood sugar levels. It does this by slowing down the rate at which the oats (carbohydrate) break down and release energy. We want a consistent, steady stream of energy to keep us going and to keep our moods stable. Therefore adding protein foods to porridge is a great way to help us feel full for longer.
Add nuts, seeds or my latest favourite is Tahini (sesame seed paste)
Chia seeds are a great way to lighten your porridge. Combine a Tablespoon in a small jam jar. Fill with water, shake several times until the seeds start to become like a gel, then use immediately or keep in the fridge for a couple of days. Its tasteless and high in the good fat, Omega 3 so mix in a couple or tablespoons of the gel to your porridge and it won’t taste any different.
Always choose a good quality porridge oat. Jumbo oats have been broken down the least and therefore retain more nutrition. They take slightly longer to cook and have more texture.
- Put a handful of oats in a pan.
- Add enough milk to cover the oats.
- Leave to soak over night if possible. This helps to make the grain more digestible and speeds up cooking time.
- Add a pinch of seasalt and cinnamon (For flavour-optional)
- Heat the porridge slowly. Keep stirring it and add more milk if it becomes too thick.
- When it is smooth and hot (5-10 mins) remove from the heat.
- Add sweetener, nuts, seeds etc to taste
Finally, fancy raw porridge? This is made with whole oat groats ie before its been flattened or broken down into flakes. Soak a handful overnight then use a little of the soaking liquid and put it through a blender until it reaches your preferred consistency. Add cinnamon and a small pinch of seasalt and sweeten if necessary. Its cold but delicious and a great power packed breakfast to take to work with you.