Called gruel in Quebec, porridge is the English name for a dish made by boiling ground, crushed or chopped grains (usually oat) in water, milk or both. “Porridge is one of the most ancient forms of cereal and edible grain consumption in the history of humanity. It was used long before the invention of bread some 4,000 years ago.” (Source)
Porridge is actually the easiest and most digestible way of consuming cereals including oat, which is regarded as a super food for its his high contents of group B vitamins and oligo-elements (zinc, iron, magnesium) and fibres essential for a healthy gut flora and balanced blood sugar, responsible for our feeling of satiety (fullness). Hot or cold, with fruit or vegetable, it can be consumed any way you like.
This ultra-simple and super-fast recipe is the fruit of my countless culinary experimentation and is meant to be served chilled with fruit (or without) and will keep a week refrigerated. I have substituted rice, millet and buckwheat flakes for oatmeals. What you need to know is that oats contain a protein similar to gluten called avenin, which is usually well-tolerated by coeliacs and gluten-intolerant subjects, but in some countries they're often contaminated with other cereals during production phase and the many brands I have tested so far all made me sick. If you suffer from a gluten intolerance and still wish to use oatmeals for all its healthy benefits, I suggest you try a “gluten-free” brand.
The jellied aspect of this porridge to be served for breakfast (or as a snack, but please note it really fills you up) is created by the addition of psyllium, a plant from India, rich in fibres and mucilage which promotes bowel function and protects your gut. Psyllium is recommended to fight against inflammatory bowel diseases such as IBS and functional colopathy. In addition, it also has a beneficial impact on cardiovascular diseases by keeping blood sugar and fat levels constant and regulating blood pressure.
Makes 6 cups:
- 1 litre almond or hazelnut milk
- 2 tbsp rice flakes
- 2 tbsp millet flakes
- 2 tbsp buckwheat flakes
- 1 tbsp powdered psyllium
- 2 drops bitter almond essential oil
Bring plant-based milk to a boil with all the ingredients. Stir well to ensure a lump-free mixture. Use a whisk if necessary. When it starts boiling, keep stirring for a couple of minutes as the mixture starts to thicken. Do not let it get too thick otherwise you may have trouble transferring it to glass yogurt cups (or any other type of similar individual containers with a lid). Leave to cool for a couple of hours before refrigerating. It will get thicker.
NOTE: You may try to transfer this jellied porridge to sillicon moulds: given its consistency, it should unmould even better than traditional pudding or cheesecake. It's just less convenient for storage if you plan on making a supply for several days.
And of course, you may use any flavouring you wish, replace bitter almond oil with vanilla or coffee extract, powdered cocoa, etc. Since it contains no added sugar, you may serve it with seasonal fruits (it's delicious with gooseberries). Or you may sugar it with honey. I have also tested a version with coconut milk, vanilla and two tablespoons of grated coconut, so yummy!
As for the mix of cereal flakes, some brands sell it ready-for-use or organic food stores.
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Tags: recipe, cooking, food, health, cereals, eyael
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