Food For Thought: Breakfast … It shouldn’t be difficult or boring!!!
By Sandy McCall
What to do about breakfast on those busy days? It’s an important meal, why not make breakfast for the week ahead? Saturday or Sunday mornings are make-ahead days for me so that I have some easy breakfast meals prepared for the busy week ahead and beyond.
Read on as you may be surprised at what you might include in your breakfast menu! My ideas are: Chia Breakfast Pudding; apple butter that is used for more that toast; no-cook oatmeal; millet-egg cups; quick hot cereal from seeds and grains, frittatas from last night’s leftovers, sprouted bread egg sandwich with turkey bacon, avocado and tomato; quiche; hearty pancakes and waffles; breakfast burritos and huevos rancheros … the list goes on and on. Nothing boring here, including the breakfast that your mother told you not to eat! Remember to write to me with your ideas and I ask for some other recipes that I haven’t shared here!
Hot cereal ideas: Try cooking up a little teff, millet and brown rice cereal—yes, mix them together and make up your own combos … don’t forget the oatmeal, quinoa and buckwheat groats, etc. Generally you use twice as much water as cereal with a pinch of salt. Some grains and seeds take longer than others to cook, so you can add the quick cooking ones at the end.
[Foodie tip: search for these phone apps: Food Network “In the Kitchen” has great recipes. All Recipes has a fun spinner where you can choose particular ingredients and meals]
Because I eat hot cereal often in the winter months, I love to top my cereal with different things including the traditional fresh or dried fruit, nuts and yogurt. And then there is coconut/almond milk, rice milk or almond milk, etc. My latest topping favorite is homemade apple butter, made in the crockpot and you can freeze the extra—easy, no sugar, thick, dark and rich with flavor! Write to me for the recipe.
Check out “Top Rated Egg Recipes.”
[Foodie tip: have a coffee bean grinder? Clean it and use to chop dried herbs and small seeds.]
My oldest daughter, cook extraordinaire, asked me about chia seeds as she is working on cooking foods that her husband might benefit from as he explores better health. Chia seeds! Really? I just think of the TV commercial for “Chi-chi-chia animals” and never really considered chia seeds as an ingredient for cooking; but when I finally got past the song in my head, I started to explore. I had no idea that they were even edible, never mind providing such great benefits. Did you know that chia seeds are high in omega 3’s and 6’s, anti-inflammatory and contain protein? And the best part is that it keeps you full longer than some foods.
Here’s my Breakfast Chia Pudding that is no cook, easy and of course you can eat it for dessert too!
1 cup thick vanilla yogurt (or
plain greek yogurt)
1 cup almond-coconut milk
¼ cup chia seeds
1 tsp vanilla (2 tsp if you use
plain greek yogurt)
1 T maple syrup
Stir all ingredients together, let sit on counter for 30-60 minutes, stir again. Cover and refrigerate over night. Top with sliced strawberries and chopped almonds, drizzle with maple syrup if you like! Soooo good!
And who says you can’t eat last night’s healthy leftovers for breakfast today!! I often eat leftover salmon cakes with eggs for my next day’s breakfast!! Leftover veggies make a quick and easy frittata when you add garlic, onions, eggs and cheese, although there are no rules here—you can add any ingredients!
In case you missed Common Sense Health: “SuperFoods” For A Long, Healthy Life By Maureen “Mo” McDonnell, RN check it out in our February 2014 issue.
And I just created a wonderful recipe for Almond Ganache Cookies that I think are actually good for breakfast too! There are 2 T of agave nectar in two dozen cookies with no additional sweetener in the ganache. I am sure my mother would be mortified at eating dark chocolate for breakfast. (Sorry Mom!) Write to me for the recipe.
So as I mentioned, Saturday and especially Sunday mornings are the time I often make something ahead for the week.
Try this: When you make hearty buckwheat pancakes or waffles, cook them all and freeze the remainder for an easy heat-and-serve breakfast during the week.
Write to me and we will share ideas!
Breakfast Millet Cups
1 C cooked millet (or try mixing
½ millet and ½ quinoa)
½ t salt
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 or 3 cloves garlic, peeled and
6 T coconut oil
1 T dried sage
1 T dried parsley
8 eggs, whisk and add small
amount of salt
½ C grated cheese of your
choice (parm, feta, cheddar,
Heat coconut oil and add onions and garlic and cook until soft, add sage and parsley and cooked millet, mix thoroughly. Press millet mixture into muffin tins so that you are forming a crust. Add eggs and top with cheese. Bake at 375 degrees until eggs are cooked, crust is browned and cheese is melted! Eat some now and freeze the rest for later on. You can add any ingredients that appeal to you, how about mushrooms, sausage or bacon? *Try using large muffin tins and doubling the recipe and amount in each cup.
Sandy McCall’s day job is working as the Broker/Owner of Southern Life Realty. When she’s not cooking or loving-up her cat and dogs, she enjoys writing for WNC Woman! Sandy@SouthernLifeRealty.com 828-273-9755.