My go to breakfast is simple, quick and easy. Those three little words that appear to answer the needs of our fast-paced lives. It is not hard to get in a rut and scoff down the same breakfast day after day. But life necessitates variety. Sometimes it’s nice to slow down and stir the pot.
This week, that pot has been filled with porridge. Amaranth porridge to be precise. Strictly speaking amaranth is the seed of a perennial herb, not a grain. The seeds are the size of pin pricks but feel as soft as sand running through an hourglass.
FUN FACT: Amaranth is native to Central America and was frequently used by the Aztecs and Mayans. Aztec women baked biscuits using amaranth flour and human blood for religious festivals. Can’t say I’ll be trying that anytime soon but thankfully amaranth can be used in other ways. Though I’ve never come across them at market, the leaves can be used in salads, and the seeds can be popped, simmered or sprouted. When cooking the seeds, use a ratio of 1 cup amaranth to 2.5-3 cups liquid. Be careful not to over cook them as they can become gluggy.
The Healthy Bits. For a tiny seed amaranth packs a nutritional punch. The seeds are high protein, just 1 cup will supply 60% of an adults recommended daily intake (RDI). Amaranth is also high in fibre, iron and calcium. Just a 1/4 cup will supply 21% RDI of iron, 31% RDI of fibre and 7% RDI of calcium.* That’s twice as much calcium as milk if you’re still on that band wagon. As an added bonus amaranth is gluten free.
I find the keys to a good porridge are spices and toppings. Think of the grain as the ground floor and build up from there. This particular blend is on the sweeter side thanks to the dates. No sprinkled brown sugar needed. The ginger’s tang balances out the sweetness and the apple provides the textual crunch.
Hope you enjoy!
Are you stuck in a breakfast rut?
Apple Amaranth Porridge
Serves 1 – double and triple as needed
1/2C coconut milk – click here for how to make your own
3 dates – chopped
2cm piece of fresh ginger – grated
1 apple – diced
1. Add amaranth, coconut milk, water and dates to a pot. Bring to the boil and then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
2. Remove the lid and turn the heat up to medium. Continue cooking, allowing the liquid to evaporate until your desired consistency is reached, usually 1-3 minutes.
3. Serve topped with diced apple, grated ginger and a sprinkling of coconut flakes.
1. If you are using home-made coconut milk, you can use 1 cup of milk instead of half milk half water as it tends not to be as rich as canned milk.
2. No thermomix directions for this one. Just not a fan of the texture of thermo porridge. Plus the effort of getting all those tiny seeds out from under the blades is so not worth it.