Other potential titles for this post included, “Three of my favorite things” or “Recipes I’ve Been Meaning to Tell You About”. I’ve been feeling under the weather for the past week, but now that I can finally smell and taste properly again, I’m back to make up for my absence with three recipes in one. (A better blogger would have recipes on reserve for occasions like these, but then again, I have to be sufficiently excited about a recipe to post it and I could hardly stand to sit on a good one.)
Each component is delightful on its own, but they just so happen to combine marvelously well in one breakfast bowl. Nutty, fruity, creamy—yes, more, please.
I’ll give you a rundown of each. The oatmeal cooking technique, which I discovered in Megan Gordan’s Whole-Grain Mornings cookbook, yields nutty and fluffy (not at all mushy) oatmeal.
The strawberry chia jam utilizes summer’s finest [frozen] strawberries, a dollop of natural sweetener and thickens with the help of “superfood” chia seeds. It cooks down in under thirty minutes and tastes much fresher and brighter than store-bought jams.
Lastly, coconut whipped cream has already taken the internet by storm, for good reason. I like it just as much, if not more than, freshly whipped cream. It’s better for you, too.
Since I haven’t been feeling well, I’ve been paying extra attention to the fuel that I’ve been consuming. I’m not a nutritionist, but I believe that this breakfast is excellent fuel. It’s full of whole grains, seeds, fruit and healthy fat. And more than that, it’s crazy delicious and brightens up dreary winter mornings with a swirl of shocking pink. Can’t beat that!
I should mention that while I was snuggled up with sweet Cookie in front of the TV (House of Cards season two!), I researched foods that heal and fight inflammation. The internet says those foods are vegetables, fruits, whole grains, seeds… everything I’m already accustomed to eating! High five, self. Way to treat yourself kindly, recipe makers. Hope you enjoy these recipes as much as I do.
- 1 bag (12 ounces) frozen organic strawberries or other berries*
- 2 to 3 tablespoons honey, maple syrup or agave nectar
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 to 2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1½ cups + 2 tablespoons water
- ½ cup milk of choice (I used light coconut milk)
- Generous pinch kosher or sea salt
- Pinch of ground cinnamon (optional)
- Pinch of ground ginger (optional)
- Optional mix-ins: flax seeds, shredded coconut, toasted nuts, etc.
- 1 can (14 ounces) full fat coconut milk, chilled at least 10 hours (the coconut milk MUST be full fat and MUST be refrigerated for at least 10 hours. Put a mixing bowl in the freezer or refrigerator to chill while you're at it.)
- 1 tablespoon honey, maple syrup or agave nectar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- The strawberry chia jam takes the longest to make, so let's start with the jam: In a medium saucepan, combine the berries (no need to defrost if they are frozen) and sweetener. Cover and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently. Once the berries are warmed throughout and saucy (5 minutes or more), lightly mash the berries with a potato masher or fork.
- Reduce the heat to medium low. Stir in the chia seeds and cook, stirring frequently, until the jam is reduced and looking, for lack of better term, jammy (15 to 20 minutes). Note that the jam will further thicken up as it cools. Remove the pan from heat and add more sweetener if you'd like.
- Make the oatmeal: Melt the coconut oil/butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the oats and toast over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until they start smelling fragrant and toasty, around 6 to 8 minutes.
- In a large, heavy bottomed pot, combine the milk, water, salt, cinnamon and ginger. Bring the mixture to a slow boil over medium heat. Add the toasted oats and gently stir once or twice to incorporate the oats into the liquid. Cover the pot and turn off the heat. Let the oats sit on the burner, untouched, for 7 minutes. After 7 minutes, uncover and check the oats. Mine were perfectly done at this point, but if yours are wetter than you'd like, let them continue to absorb water in a covered pot for a few more minutes.
- Make the coconut whipped cream: Pull out the chilled can of coconut milk and mixing bowl. The coconut cream should have separated from the liquid by now. Flip the can over and open it from the bottom with a can opener. Pour out the coconut water (reserve for smoothies if you'd like).
- Scoop the solid coconut cream into the chilled bowl. Using an electric hand mixer, beat the cream until fluffy and smooth. Add the sweetener and vanilla extract and gently blend again to combine. Use the coconut cream immediately or cover and store in the fridge for later (it will be soft at room temperature and firm when cold).
*On using frozen berries: I really recommend frozen berries for this jam. They break down especially well once heated and taste better than off-season berries. Angela says that fresh strawberries don't break down as well as other berries, so if you're using fresh strawberries, she recommends breaking them down in a food processor before cooking.
Recipe yields 2 very large or 4 moderate portions. Store leftover components separately in the refrigerator, covered. You might want to add a bit of water while reheating the oats.
Make it gluten free: Use certified gluten-free oats.
Make it vegan: Use coconut oil instead of butter and maple syrup or agave nectar instead of honey.
If you want to add more protein to this breakfast, top your oatmeal with nuts and/or Greek yogurt.