Amaranth & Coconut Pumpkin Porridge

DSC_2795Amaranth & Coconut Pumpkin Porridge

This recipe is a delicious, hearty breakfast recipe or you could consume it whenever you fancy. It was inspired by My New Roots and a dollop of my own tastes. This recipe is gluten free, sugar free and the option of being dairy free. Tailor it to your needs.

What is Amaranth?

Amaranth, like Quinoa, is a seed, however often mistaken as a grain. It is nutrient dense. Amaranth is an abundant source of dietary fibre, calcium and minerals such as iron, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and manganese. It is jam-packed with all essential amino acids making it a protein rich seed. Amaranth is a versatile seed and can be consumed in both savoury and sweet dishes. When using amaranth in cooking it is imperative you soak the seed overnight.

Why soak?

Amaranth contains an acid called “Phytic Acid”, which basically hinders the absorption of all the goodness present in this little gem. By soaking overnight (minimum 8 hours) in filtered water you reduce the phytic acid level which in return will allow you to absorb all the wonderful enzymes. It is recommended that you soak rice, quinoa, buckwheat, millet even nuts and seeds to receive optimal nutrition. You might consider this time-consuming but always remember a short-term pain is a long-term gain when it comes to your health.

DSC_2802Recipe

½ cup Amaranth (soaked overnight)

165 ml Coconut Cream or Coconut Milk or Almond Milk

1 cup Pumpkin Puree

1 teaspoon All Spice

1 teaspoon Vanilla Powder

½ teaspoon Cardamom Powder

1 teaspoon Homemade Coconut Butter

1 teaspoon Rice Syrup

½ teaspoon Lemon Zest

½ Orange Zest

1 tablespoon Chia Seeds

Pinch of Pink Rock Salt

Method

Soak amaranth overnight.

Pumpkin Puree: In a large bowl add pumpkin chunks and olive oil (1-2 tablespoons), ensure that pumpkin is moist. Pop the pumpkin chunks on a flat baking tray and roast at 180 for 40 minutes, they should be soft in the middle. Mash the chunks, viola you have pumpkin puree.

Next drain and rinse amaranth using a sieve. In a saucepan add amaranth, pumpkin puree, coconut cream, spices, coconut butter, rice syrup, zest, chia seeds and salt.

On a medium heat cook for 15 minutes, stirring continuously; to ensure porridge does not stick to the bottom of the saucepan. When the amaranth seed becomes clear it is ready for consumption.

Allow to cool and consume.

DSC_2805Toppings

I topped my porridge with:

  • Greek Yogurt
  • Toasted Coconut Flakes
  • Raw Cacao Nibs

 

Eat Real, Great Feel!

 

 

From Batter to Cookie

Homemade Rustic Coconut Cookies

Dying for a nice cookie the other day I decided to bake these rustic delights. Rustic because they are not cut perfect but who cares when they tasted luscious. To complement these heavenly creations I mustered up a hot ginger cocoa made from coconut milk (1 cup coconut milk, ½ teaspoon ginger powder, 2 tablespoons organic cocoa powder, pinch of vanilla powder, 1 teaspoon rice syrup; heat in a saucepan).

The recipe is gluten-free and only uses a natural form of sugar, rice syrup. The coconut flour is rich in dietary fibre and protein. How could you resist?

Ingredients

1 cup Coconut Flour

½ cup Desiccated Coconut

1 teaspoon Cinnamon

1 teaspoon Ginger

½ teaspoon Cardamom

2 ½ Pecans, Almonds, Walnuts

1 tablespoon Chia Seeds

Pinch Vanilla Powder

Pinch Himalayan Rock Salt

¼ teaspoon Baking Soda

2 tablespoon Rice Syrup (you can adjust this to cater for your sweet buds)

¼ cup Coconut Oil

6 Free Range Eggs (this will moisten the batter up as coconut flour can be dry)

Method

Preheat the oven 180c.

Chop nuts, you can pop them in a bag and bash them with a rolling-pin or break them up with your hands.

In a large mixing bowl add all dry ingredients and combine.

In a separate bowl mix whisk eggs, oil, rice syrup and pour into the dry mixture.

Mix all ingredients. The batter should be thick and moist.

Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. Scoop batter onto the tray. Smooth out the mixture with your spatula ½ inch thick. Place in the oven at 180c for  25-30 minutes until golden brown.

Remove grease proof paper, cool on a wire rack, cut into squares or triangles.

Eat Real, Great Feel!

 

Cupboard Essentials in My Kitchen

Trips to the supermarket can be a daunting task when you aren’t sure what you really need or want. Below I have put together an outline of essential items that will help you to enhance your healthy eating habits.

Cupboard Essentials

  • Oils: Coconut Oil Cold Pressed, Olive Oil Cold Pressed, Avocado Oil, Rapeseed Oil, Ghee Clarified Butter.
  • Salt: Pink Himalayan Rock Salt, Rock Salt.
  • Spices: Every press should have an abundance of spices to add flavor to your favourite dishes. Pick yourself up some Chilli Flakes, Garam Masala, Turmeric Powder, Cardamom Pods, Star Anise, Mustard Seeds, Chilli Powder, Whole Coriander Seeds or powder, Ginger Powder, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Fennel Seeds, Fenugreek, Cumin Seeds and Peppercorns; the list is endless!
  • Herbs: Where possible I like to use the fresh herbs, however, it isn’t always possible so I go for the dry option. Basil, Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley, Bay Leaves, Sage, Tarragon, Mint; tailor to suit your cooking habits.
  • Sauces: Fish Sauce, Tamari Style Soy Sauce (gluten-free option), Tabasco Sauce, Mustard, Peanut Butter (make sure it has only peanuts in the ingredients, this is the healthier and more natural form).
  • Tins of Coconut Milk. Check the ingredients list and try to avoid brands that add additives, try keeping it as natural as possible. My favourite brands are Biona or Chaokoh.
  • Tins of Tomatoes. Great for the bases of sauces and soups.
  • Vinegar: Organic Raw Apple Cider Vinegar, brands I like are Bragg or Biona, Balsamic Vinegar, White Wine Vinegar, Red Wine Vinegar.
  • Sweeteners: Raw Honey, Unrefined Brown Sugar, Stevia, Coconut Sugar, Agave Syrup.
  • Chocolate: 70-85% Dark Chocolate is great when you get a sugar craving. My favourite brands are Lindt or Green & Black. Also keep an Organic Cocoa Powder in the press; Green & Black have a great cocoa powder. It comes in very handy for making your own natural hot chocolate drink (recipe to follow),Carob Powder is fantastic.
  • Nuts: Almonds, Pecans, Walnuts, Brazil Nuts, Roasted Coconut Flakes, Raw Peanuts ; these are all great for snack recipes.
  • Flour: Almond Flour, Coconut Flour and Desiccated Coconut; I use these flours mostly as I am Gluten Free.

Places I can recommend in Johannesburg are:

For a list of Farmers Markets in Johannesburg visit Eat Out.

The list above is an outline of products that will be needed for the various healthy recipes and ideas that I post. There is no need to make a burst for the store straight away to purchase the entire product list. I will add to the list as time progresses.

Eat real, Great Feel!