11 November 2011

simple breakfast quinoa & oats

I'm cozy in bed, barely having eaten my breakfast and sipped my coffee and it's nearing noon. This is a rare occurrence these days. Life is very full; so full, this week, that I have at least an hour's worth of dishes sitting on my counter waiting for me to wash. Late nights, early mornings and a husband studying away furiously do not make for a clean house, but they do make for a full heart.

I'm savoring the feeling today of having nowhere to be, getting some true sabbath rest: there is so much I could be doing, maybe I should be doing, but I am choosing to put it on hold and just be (something I've never been good at). I received an email yesterday, from my boss of all people, containing these wise words:

“When we breathe, we do not stop inhaling because we have taken in all the oxygen we will ever need, but because we have all the oxygen we need for this breath. Then we exhale, release carbon dioxide, and make room for more oxygen. Sabbath, like the breath, allows us to imagine we have done enough work for this day. Do not be anxious about tomorrow, Jesus said again and again. Let the work of this day be sufficient.” {Wayne Muller}

On this holiday, our countries' generous gift of a day without work, let's take a breath and imagine that for today, the work we have done is enough. 

Here's a simple, healthy breakfast for a simple, restful day. In our endeavors to eat more whole foods and save drastically on our grocery bills, hot cereal has become a morning staple. We started incorporating quinoa, a tiny, nutty, protein-rich ancient aztec seed that is oh-so-popular right now for good reasons, into our oats. It comes in many different colors and can be found in the grain or bulk section of most grocery stores. Quinoa is more traditionally used as a dinner side dish or a base for lunchtime salads, but I love the way it tastes drizzled with honey or agave and soy milk, and sprinkled with generous amounts of cinnamon. It's delightfully warm and cozy to wake up with before I face the elements on my commute to work, and it keeps me going til lunchtime.

Breakfast Quinoa & Oats
feeds 2-3

1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
4 cups water
salt to taste

Bring water, quinoa and salt to a boil in a medium pot. Turn to low and cover. After 5 minutes, stir in oats. Re-cover and simmer, gently stirring occasionally, until quinoa and oats are cooked (about 15 minutes total). Quinoa will have a slightly al dente bite to it but you will be able to see the little white curly-cue tails. Turn off heat and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Spoon into bowls and top with whatever your heart desires. Some ideas: agave nectar, honey, or brown sugar, cinnamon, diced apple, sliced almonds or chopped walnuts, and a splash of milk or non-dairy milk.  Enjoy!

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