I hope all of you are excited for Foodie Friday just as much as I am! The excitement stems from the fact that I absolutely love this dish. Today, I am sharing my soaked oatmeal recipe and you are in for a real treat. I discovered the benefits of soaking grains a few years back and now this is the only way that I like to eat my oatmeal. My kids, especially my son, would eat oatmeal for breakfast every single day if I let him. Since I like to try to limit their consumption of grains, I do my best to switch it up a bit. However, they typically have oatmeal a couple times a week. It is quick and easy, so I guess I shouldn’t complain!
So, let’s talk talk about soaking grains. Several years back, when I was desperate to find a cause for my son’s stomach issues, I came across Nourishing Traditions. I learned so much from the book and I highly recommend if you are looking to clean up your diet or are dealing with health issues. To me, the most interesting part of the book was the discussion about grains. In the book Sally talks about how if grains are not prepared properly, your body is not able to absorb the minerals that are in the grains. In order to break down the enzymes and improve digestion, grains need to be soaked. Here is an excerpt from the book:
Phosphorus in the bran of whole grains is tied up in a substance called phytic acid. Phytic acid combines with iron, calcium, magnesium, copper and zinc in the intestinal tract, clocking their absorption. Whole grains also contain enzyme inhibitors that can interfere with digestion. Traditional societies usually soak or ferment their grains before eating them, processes that neutralize phytates and enzyme inhibitors and in effect, predigest grains so that all their nutrients are more available. Sprouting, overnight soaking, and old-fashioned sour leavening can accomplish this important predigestive process in our own kitchens. Many people who are allergic to grains will tolerate them well when they are prepared according to these procedures. Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon, Pg 25
While soaking grains is not a solution for those with celiac, there are people with gluten sensitivities that are able to tolerate sprouted or soaked grains. These grains are so much easier on your digestive system because the soaking breaks down the anti-nutrients (gluten, lectin, phytic acid, etc). There is a lot of controversy out there as to if soaking or sprouting make the grains more nutritious, but that is really not too much of a concern for me. I like to soak my oats because I can tell a difference in my digestion and I also notice that soaked grains tend to stay with me longer. I do not tend to have the crash mid-morning when I soak my oats.
In full disclosure, I do not soak all of my grains. I like to soak my oats and have a wonderful soaked pancake recipe, but that is as far as I go. I occasionally buy sprouted rice and sprouted spelt flour, but have not taken the time to sprout on my own. Some of you might have tried Ezekiel Bread before. That is made with sprouted grains as well.
Soaking oats is extremely easy and speeds up breakfast in the morning. It does, however, involve a little bit of prep the night before. Basically, you put the oats, warm water and an acidic medium in a large covered mixing bowl and give it a stir. I like to use plain whole milk yogurt, but you could use lemon juice or apple cider vinegar as well. Then, you let the oats soak overnight. For the full benefit, soaking for 8-12 hours is optimal. In the morning, I prefer to rinse my oats and then cook on the stove with a little more water and you are good to go. It is important to add a source of fat for optimal digestion and we like to add a bit of Kerrygold on top.
We vary the toppings based on the time of year. My kids favorite is bananas and chocolate chips. Big surprise! I love berry season and enjoy the combination on strawberries and blueberries. Another favorite is almond butter and bananas. My mouth is watering as I write this! The sky is the limit with the toppings. You can even get wild and crazy and set up a topping bar. The kids know mama is in a really good mood when the sprinkles and marshmallows come out!
So, who wants the recipe?
- 2 cups steel cut oats (use gluten free, if needed)
- 4 cups warm water
- 2 Tablespoons plain, whole milk yogurt (buttermilk, lemon juice or apple cider vinegar can also be used)
- 2 cups water
- 2 Tablespoons Kerrygold butter
- Place oats, water and yogurt in large, glass covered mixing bowl. Stir to combine. You could also use a towel to cover.
- Let oats sit on counter overnight or for at least 8 hours.
- In the morning, drain and rinse oats in a colander.
- Bowl water in saucepan.
- Add oats to boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes, until water is absorbed.
- Once oats reach desired consistency, add butter and cook until melted.
- Serve hot and mix in honey, maple syrup or coconut sugar.
- Top as desired. Fresh berries are wonderful.
I hope you enjoy. The weekend is calling my name! I have a few projects I want to work on and I am trying to finish the new Nicholas Sparks book. What is on your agenda?
Talk to you next week!