Lemon-zested Halva Porridge
This post has been a long time coming and to be honest this recipe is so easy I couldn’t justify posting it sooner. But nevertheless it is a staple and signature of mine for my family and friends and therefore must be shared for cold mornings. Albeit, I enjoyed and created this first in summer as I am a sucker for a hot breakfast! ;-D
My staple porridge recipe has seen me evolve from the humble, yet deceptive, oatmeal sold in packets at the supermarket to organic rolled oats soaked overnight. It’s not nearly as posh as it sounds, I encourage you to make the shift to simple rolled oats and spruce the flavour up yourself as opposed to relying on the preservatives and refined sugars in the packets.
Through my journey to produce the most comforting breakfast bowl for me and my sister (yes this passes the young sugar monster’s taste test with flying colours ;-)) I have also started soaking my oats overnight then draining and cooking them in milk and water on the stovetop in the morning. This decreases cooking time, improves digestion as well as removes some of the phytic acid in the oats which prevent nutrient absorption. For more information on this process I have linked My New Roots’ excellent justification for soaking your oats here (which also includes an amazing recipe for raw buckwheat porridge.)
This recipe claims prizes in being super nourishing for your body and providing you with the brain power for your day ahead. I won’t get into the benefits of oats and tahini just yet (I have a ‘Mega Oatmeal Toppings’ post coming up soon where I will outline how great they are) but I believe oats are a natural superfood and are also relatively cheap for an organic bag or a normal one. Porridge is a year-round breakfast for me as they are just so versatile, but I also believe in variety so I alternate between grains/seeds as well, like buckwheat groats which has become a new favourite. I apply the term halva loosely, taking the essentials of nut-based halvah (tahini and raw honey) whilst adding dried figs to add to the Turkish feel of this recipe, and simply because I LOVE DRIED FIGS! ;-D
Serves: 1 (double as required)
Lemon-zested Halva Porridge
– 1/2 cup rolled oats
– squeeze of lemon or apple cider vinegar for soaking
– 1/2 cup desired milk (almond, rice, I have recently begun using oat milk)
– 1/4 cup water
– 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
– 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (grated exterior/skin of a lemon, make sure it is washed well and organic if possible)
– 1 tablespoon squeezed lemon juiced
– 1/2 mashed ripe banana
– 1 heaped teaspoon tahini, hulled/unhulled (sesame seed paste)
– 1 teaspoon raw organic honey
– 2 soft dried figs, chopped in chunks
– sesame seeds to garnish
The night before:
Place the oats in a bowl and cover fully with water and a squeeze of lemon or a teaspoon of apple cider medium. This is the acid medium that assists with the phytic acid issue and is explained above. Leave on your kitchentop overnight.
In the morning:
Drain and rinse your oats in a fine sieve. Combine the drained oats with the desired milk, water and mashed ripe banana in a small saucepan and bring to the boil on medium heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently so the oats don’t stick to the pan, until desired consistency has been reached. I love my oats a bit gluggy for that ‘sticks to your ribs’ texture (sorry couldn’t find a better word) as I find it deeply satisfying but some may like a more liquidy porridge so adjust the milk to your preference. 🙂 Towards the end of the cooking time add in your vanilla extract, the lemon juice & zest and mix well in a whipping action with your fork. I love the lemon flavour so the measurements are simply a guide, I usually add more. Begin small and adjust to your taste, testing as you go to get the perfect balance. Please test in order to not overpower your oats!
Take off the stove and pour into your serving bowl/mug. Top with the tahini, honey, dried figs and sesame seeds. Gently swirl all of the toppings into the oatmeal and enjoy! 😀
Delicious additions: cacao nibs, buckinis, coconut chips/flakes, bee pollen, chia seeds.
Also, Merry Christmas guys! Have an amazing day and remember to treasure this time with your loved ones and disconnect from social media to remain present in the moment. I will be spending Christmas Eve cooking up a feast for my family tomorrow from some of my favourite cookbooks (I recently purchased Sarah Wilson’s I Quit Sugar For Life on my trip to Pana Chocolate) and look forward to featuring some meals/dessert on my Instagram @hazel.coco. I also have some exciting things beginning in 2015 and cannot wait to share them with you.