breakfast + brunch/ gluten free/ this is life/ vegan

Coconut Quinoa Porridge with persimmon

persimmon-coconut-quinoa-breakfast-bowl-bircher-muesli-sweetpea-darlingheartSometimes there are weeks when the universe throws all it’s got at you; when so many big things happen all at once that life seems a little absurd. Things that might otherwise feel like tragedies (maybe because they actually are) don’t get to you in the way you thought they would. Maybe it’s a reaction to the shock of it all, all those disparate things at once, or perhaps we discover that when we are really, truly tested we find reserves and resilience we doubted we had. Maybe you even start to laugh amongst it all; or sing really loudly in the car, or tell stories of your childhood that you thought you had forgotten. Weeks like these make you realise that life is short, and full, and even though when times are dull and we can wish it had more colour, there will be other times so full you can hardly believe it could all happen at once.

I’ve had a week, full. Deaths, babies and memorials; endings and beginnings and old memories, and a close call with fire.

coconut-quinoa-porridge-chai-spiced-persimmon-bowl-breakfast-sweetpea-darlingheartAll these things had they happened on their own might have felt like too much to bear, causing me to overflow with emotion and think too much about anything or everything; being a sensitive person I often feel like a sponge, absorbing and feeling everything that is happening around me. But somehow all of these things put together just felt like life; full of the unexpected, ready to take you places you never knew you would go and giving you a good reality check, loud and clear, that life is what you make it so you better make it count right now.

You can never really know what a day will bring. And at the same time, you can never really know how you will feel about any of what happens to you in life. Sometimes you will feel things in the moment, and sometimes it will take a while for it all to sink in. But if you do find yourself faced with extraordinary circumstances, you may surprise yourself and handle more that you ever thought you could. Life could be bringing you ‘lessons’ left, right and centre; but then again maybe it’s all just stuff that is happening around you.

Sometimes going through the hard stuff makes you realise how amazing life really is, and how capable you actually are. And that you may as well roll with it and find the joy that you can in every little moment you get.

Breakfast in cafes with messy hair, no shoes and still in your pyjamas is actually really fun, and funny, when you don’t care what anybody else thinks. And if you share the story of what has been happening to you people will respond in amazingly supportive ways. Getting things done when you need to, rather than letting all the little things get on top of you, is incredibly empowering and can give you energy and momentum you never thought you had. You are an amazing being, surprise yourself. I believe in you.

If amongst all that life brings you find yourself stepping up to the challenge or dealing with the unusual, or just making any normal moment a little more fun, take a second to realise how amazing the ordinary can actually be and how powerful you actually are, if you’re living in the moment and making the most of it. These moments are the stuff that life is made of, and potential memories in the making.

Sometimes life is normal and sometimes it isn’t. Celebrate both the absurd and the normal as much as you can, because when life is one way you may find yourself wishing it were the other. If you do your best to go into any day with openness in your heart and a willingness to share you will be amazed by yourself and others. And by life.

Quinoa-persimmmon-bowl-coconut-porridge

Coconut Quinoa Porridge – warm or cold – with chai spices and persimmon

My grandpa always made his own cereal. He had a special container in which he would pour all manner of ingredients, almost the contents of a health food store. There was a particular rhythm he used to shake the container and mix the ingredients all around – an up and down, then a round and round in a figure eight, moving his whole body to get the movement just right. Every morning the muesli would be mixed, regardless of it being mixed so thoroughly the day before; mixing each and every bowl signalled a new start to a new day.

I never could quite tell just what went in there, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it changed depending on what the latest health research was. I’m sure there were always oats, and often sunflower seeds and most probably bran – the foods of an avid health food enthusiast in his time. The sound of the muesli mixing is one of the tunes of my childhood and starting the day in this way, with his bespoke cereal and the rituals that came with it, must surely have set him up for the day ahead.

I never did get to make this breakfast for my Poppa but I’m sure it would have been right up his alley. He was a fan of bircher muesli, and this breakfast can be enjoyed warm if made in the morning, or cold if left to sit in the fridge overnight, bircher style. I’m not sure how he would have gone with the coconut yoghurt, it may have been a touch too new-fangled for him, but you could easily substitute with regular yoghurt if that is your wish. He was a great fan of tea, and the addition of chai spices makes this bowl extra comforting in some way, so I recommend it thoroughly. The persimmon is also a nod to my childhood as we had a large tree in our backyard and would feast on the fruit over a few weeks in the early winter each year. If you don’t enjoy persimmon or can’t find any, then prunes stewed in a little sweet tea would be a perfect accompaniment (and one my Poppa would have fully endorsed).

breakfast quinoa porridge bircher muesli bowl persimmon recipe sweetpea darlingheart

Coconut Quinoa Porridge with chai spices and persimmon

I always rinse my quinoa before cooking it, giving it a good swish with my hands in a bowl of water before draining and repeating. Quinoa has it’s own natural coating which protects the seeds, but this coating can make the quinoa taste bitter. Packaged quinoa often comes pre-rinsed, but the local one I buy in bulk at the health food store does not, so if in doubt give it a quick rinse and see if soapy bubbles form. If they do, give it a double rinse.

Serves 4

1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
1/2 cup water (or coconut water)
1 cup coconut milk
1 cinnamon quill
1 star anise
3 large slices of fresh ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla powder

10 drops liquid stevia
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 1/2 cups coconut yoghurt

For each serving:
1/2 fresh soft persimmon
small handful of chopped, toasted almonds
squeeze of lime (optional)
drizzle of maple syrup (optional)
perhaps a sprinkling of bee pollen and coconut flakes (optional)

Rinse the quinoa well and tip it into a small saucepan along with the water, coconut milk and spices. Bring to the boil over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 – 8 minutes with the lid slightly ajar for the last 2 minutes, or until the quinoa is tender and you can see the tails of the germ. Use your intuition and take the lid off if you would like a drier end result, or keep on if you prefer a silkier porridge.

Remove from the heat and stir through the stevia, followed by the shredded coconut and coconut yoghurt. Enjoy warm now, or refrigerate overnight for a cool bircher style muesli in the morning.

When ready to eat, top with the flesh of half a soft persimmon, a squeeze of lime juice, a drizzle of maple if you like and some crunchy toasted almonds, pollen and coconut flakes.

coconut-quinoa-porridge-sweetpea-darlingheart-persimmon-chai

 

Coconut Quinoa Porridge with chai spices and persimmon

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup water (or coconut water)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 cinnamon quill
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 large slices of fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla powder
  • 10 drops liquid stevia
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut yoghurt
  • For each serving:
  • 1/2 fresh soft persimmon
  • small handful of chopped, toasted almonds
  • squeeze of lime (optional)
  • drizzle of maple syrup (optional)
  • perhaps a sprinkling of bee pollen and coconut flakes (optional)

Instructions

1

Rinse the quinoa well and tip it into a small saucepan along with the water, coconut milk and spices. Bring to the boil over medium heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 - 8 minutes with the lid slightly ajar for the last 2 minutes, or until the quinoa is tender and you can see the tails of the germ. Use your intuition and take the lid off if you would like a drier end result, or keep on if you prefer a silkier porridge.

2

Remove from the heat and stir through the stevia, followed by the shredded coconut and coconut yoghurt. Enjoy warm now, or refrigerate overnight for a cool bircher style muesli in the morning.

3

When ready to eat, top with the flesh of half a soft persimmon, a squeeze of lime juice, a drizzle of maple if you like and some crunchy toasted almonds, pollen and coconut flakes.

Notes

• vegan • gluten free • grain free •

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Steve Weis
    July 3, 2017 at 9:49 am

    I love this blog and also the recipe which contains so many of my favorite things.

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