Guest Author - Jason Hodge
Growing up spending a lot of time with my grandparents I developed a deep love for the taste of porridge and over the years I've innovated my own versions of the traditional oat meals, corn meal paps, farinas, etc. We use millet in many forms at home and for very good reason. It's around 11% protein by weight, high in fibre, has a nutty, buttery flavor, is versatile [being able to easily go from sweet to savory and be paired with everything from breakfast through to dinner] and it tastes great! Hot porridge on cool overcast mornings are the ideal breakfasts for me and my family, so here's one of the many ways I use millet when I'm making one of my favorite porridges.
millet 1 cup
raw ginger 3/4 cup
pumpkin Seeds 1/2 cup
milk 5 cups [We use nut milk, coconut milk or Very Vanilla Silk (soy milk) as opposed to dairy.]
vanilla extract 1 tsp
spices 1/2 tsp
salt 1 tsp [or to taste]
oil 3 Tbsp [We use ground coconut, coconut fat, red palm oil or raw cocoa butter for our oil. it's very healthy and adds a flavor to your porridge that's second to none.]
sugar 1/2 cup - or to taste [we use agave, sucanat, ground dates or dried fruit paste. It's got more nutrients and a more complex flavor profile than white sugar which goes well with the indigenous flavors of the porridge.]
Step 1. Wash your ingredients and hone your knife. This will make all the difference in the world when you cut your ginger down. It allows you to retain those flavorful juices and nutrients in your ginger.
Step 2. Cut - Place your raw washed ginger root on your cutting board and cut it against its grain [across it's fibers] in slivers [1/8" or less]. This will facilitate the breakdown of the ginger root in the blender without leaving strings behind.
Step 3. Blend - Place your ingredients in your blender in this order: ginger, pumpkin seeds, millet, milk, vanilla, spices and salt and blend on high until the ingredients are broken down to your liking. I usually like the millet to be a little grainy still when I'm finished blending. This adds to the texture of the finished dish.
Step 4. Pour & Cook - Pour the blended ingredients into your pot and turn your heat on high and, with whisk in hand, stir the mixture from the bottom making sure to keep it from sticking. Once porridge begins to heat through [and you'll see this from two places: the sides of your pot would have stopped sweating and the mixture will begin to thicken and gently bubble] reduce the heat to a manageable medium-low and continue cooking until porridge is done [you'll know this when the texture is smooth and creamy and the taste is no longer chalky]. If you find that the porridge is a little too dense for you, no worries... just gently whisk in more milk and continue to gently heat through until you've reached your desired consistency.
Step 5. Add oil and sugar [stir oil in first then sugar until they're full incorporated into your porridge], plate and eat.
This recipe should easily serve 4 [or in my house 2, but we're big porridge eaters] or more if you are supplementing with other items in your meal.
Adding your oil and sugar last allows you to retain as much of their nutritional value that would otherwise be destroyed by the heat.
A Dollop of Ice Cream
Raisins / Dried fruit on top
Nut or Seed Toppers
Each one of these will add to the flavor and nutrient level of your hot meal. Try this recipe on for size and let me know what you think. We've had many 'picky eater' nieces and nephews who have charged the breakfast table when it was time for millet porridge.
As always, it's been my pleasure sharing this recipe with you. Until next time...