If you haven’t gathered by now, my struggle with my weight has been a life long battle..It is complicated by genetics that would have equipped me to survive the cold winters and famines of Northern Germania, along with a passion for delicious flavors, textures, and culinary experiences..Since I was a child, I remember being on some sort of diet..My all time favorite was the “No Fat” diet of my high school days where God Forbid I eat an avocado, but those bagels and white pretzels, and plastic they called low fat margarine…those were my life blood. Yeah that didn’t break my metabolism or anything…Well something happened when I hit 30..I got sick of going to bed every night a failure because I couldn’t find the will power to strictly adhere to whatever ridiculous diet gimmick I had signed myself up for that week, usuallly trying to fall asleep to the cadence of my tachycardic heart, amped up on stimulants that called themselves diet pills. I was done. I decided I was just going to start running, and figuring out how to make the things I loved, but healthier…I always loved to cook, and I rarely followed recipes (I’m a rebel like that), so why not just seek out whole foods, gorge myself on fruits and veggies, and avoid the extra sugars and white stuff if I could resist that day…And if I went to bed bloated and ashamed, I at least knew tomorrow was a new day, and G-dang-it, I knew how to make filling, delicious, AND nutritious stuff.. That’s been my m.o. since.. If I can find a dish that keeps me satisfied, hits the benchmarks of culinary balance (ie: textures, sweet, and savory, light or filling), and keep on running and hiking every chance I get, I knew I would survive, and maybe not go back to being heavy laden with 80 extra pounds of fat and self-loathing that I carried in my 20’s.. (I call those my forgotten workaholic years, most of my friends don’t even know that version of Sarah).
So that being said, I love pie…I could go into business selling pie..I’ve received marriage proposals because of my pies. Every year, during fruit harvest season, I make pies for every vendor, supplier, and UPS delivery person I’ve ever been a pain-in-the-butt to through the year , usually because I’m trying to run my art business as a wing-it McGee, procrastinator (err I mean pressure player) busy mama entrepreneur. A little pie goes a long way to bridge building and good will, let.me.tell.you. However, during pie baking season, I usually add on 5-10 lbs..Because, well. Quality Control.
So, when I’m feeling inspired and healthy, I like to tamp down that craving for pie with some of the same ingredients, but cooked into a steel cut oat breakfast porridge. It is so filling and nutritious. It gives me the perfect balance of carbs and protein before my runs, and the left-overs, when refrigerated, gel into a delicious cold pudding. So, I’ll save my tart cherry pie porridge recipe for later (my all time fav), and in the spirit of Pumpkin Spicing the crap out of everything this month, I came up with this amazing Autumn Pumpkin Spice porridge recipe:
Pumpkin Spice Breakfast Porridge~Next Day Pudding
- In a 2 quart saucepan, heat 2 cups of water & 1 cup of milk (cow, goat, or almond, you choose)to boil
- Add in 1.5 cups of pumpkin puree
- To this boiling inferno add in 1/2 cup Steel Cut Oats (they have so much more fiber, protein, and texture, and are less processed). 1/4 cup of ground flax, 1/4 cup of chia seeds
- 1/2 Cup of raisins
- 1 diced apple
- Reduce heat to medium low, and stir..Continue to add in:
- 1/2 tsp of kosher or sea salt
- 2 tsp of cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ginger
- 1 tbsp of lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or agave syrup
- 1 tsp stevia (2 small coffee packs)
- Cook, stirring often on medium low for 30 minutes. You can add more hot liquid if it gets too thick (water or milk)
- To my bowl of porridge I sprinkle hulled Pumpkin Seeds for delicious protein and texture, and when I’m feeling decadent, a spoonful of Mascarpone cheese, and an extra drizzle of maple or agave syrup. (I stole that idea from a delicious new whole foods bakery in my small town of Payson, Mogollon Moose Bakery, which adds it in to their delicious porridge as well..mmm-ah-mazing.
- Refrigerate the remainder, and indulge in a puddin-y desert for your midday snack.
Now here’s a helpful hint that I’ve learned over the years..Nutrition seekers get a lot of flack for even using sweeteners in the Paleo, low-carb world, because they say even non-caloric sweeteners make your body crave more sugar..But rather than going cold turkey, which never works for me, especially when I’m on a running regimen, my body NEEDS sweet carbs!! Rather than cutting out the indulgence of sweet treats (is life really worth living at that point, I ask you????), just slowly cut back on the sweeteners, bit by bit…You will wean your taste buds into liking a more refined, less sugary flavor profile. You can still have sweet stuff, it just doesn’t have to be knock you in the face, instant cavity sweet. It’s like a fine wine, a dark chocolate, or a decadent rich cup of coffee…it’s an acquired taste, and so much more healthy for you in the long run. Try it with your morning coffee to start…just reduce the sweeteners by fractions every day for a month.. I can’t even drink diet soda now, it’s just too sweet for me..Give it a try!
(Gird your loins for a Shameless Plug) Once again, this delicious recipe is brought to you by Tre Sorelle Studios’ Botanical Fruit Dinnerware. We now have links to purchase our best selling designs on our Shop Page. Be sure to check it out! They are perfect entertain and serveware pieces for this time of year!