Tag Archive for 'almond milk'

Millet and Amaranth Pudding

A couple of days ago, I was in the mood for comfort food. The kind that reminds me of my childhood in Germany. Growing up, we used to have one sweet lunch per week. Most frequently it was rice pudding with cinnamon, sugar and sour cherries out of a jar. It still is a hugely popular dish and served in most households. You can buy special ‘rice pudding’ rice in every grocery store. My grandma also loved to make waffles or thin pancakes with apple sauce or bread pudding with vanilla sauce. I loved those lunches and I try to keep this tradition in my family. Admittedly, these are almost the only German things I cook, although I will give “Spaetzle with Lentils” another go as soon as it gets a bit cooler.  

My favorite of all the sweet dishes is rice pudding, which pretty much sustained me through out university and my slightly “larger” years.  It is so easy to prepare, always a crowdpleaser and has the added bonus of giving me a night off from chopping. Yeah! I now cook it with short grain brown rice, maple syrup and vanilla extract and serve it with fresh berries and mangoes. It is so delicious, comforting and easy. Since I try and avoid cow’s milk, I usually make mine with fresh almond milk, which works just fine. I also use almond milk to cook our oatmeal in winter and not even my cow’s milk loving men can tell the difference.

Back to a few days ago, when I had the serious ‘urge’ for pudding. I decided to swap the rice for millet and amaranth which have been begging to be used for months. They have a similar cooking time and require about 2 1/2 cups of liquid per one cup of grain. A perfect match. Both grains are wonderfully healthy, gluten-free, full of protein, b-vitamins and minerals. I still make my own almond milk, as the Australian store bought stuff is absolutely undrinkable. I soak 1 cup of almonds in filtered water over night, give them a good wash in the morning and blend them with 4 cups of fresh water in my blender. I then strain the liquid through a special almond milk bag, which I got at a local health food store. I usually freeze the left-over pulp and add it to muffin or cake batter later on. When in the States, I use the “Whole Foods” brand organic, unsweetened almond milk, but I also like the “Blue Diamond” one.

I like to give the pudding a slight Indian touch by adding a few cardamom pods, ginger and cinnamon. It is best with fresh or frozen berries and toasted almonds. If you have any left over, it makes a delicious and very sustaining breakfast the next day. I add a bit more almond milk as the pudding turns quite solid when cooled, stir it and warm it for a minute in the microwave or on the stove. Shame that it’s all gone now, writing about it makes me want to cook some more already again…

Continue reading ‘Millet and Amaranth Pudding’

Multigrain Waffles with Sesame

We Germans, we love our waffles. Not for breakfast, no, for lunch, dinner or anytime in between. Traditionally we eat waffles with apple sauce, but we also devour them with whipped cream and sour cherries or raspberries. Growing up, we probably had one sweet lunch or dinner per week. It was either rice pudding, pancakes, bread pudding or waffles. So it won’t come as a surprise to you, when I tell you that I kept with that tradition, and occasionally make sweet dinners for my family. I had a small box full of wrinkly, soft apples in my pantry that my children refused to take to school for snack time and I decided it was time to make apple sauce again. My oldest son has become a very fast apple peeler over the years and once again was recruited for the job. We ended up with a pasta pot full of peeled and chopped apples, which we slowly steamed with the addition of a little lemon juice. Once soft, we let them cool a bit, before turning them into a fine puree using our trusted immersion blender. I filled most of the apple sauce into containers, which I store in the freezer, but I left one bowl in the fridge for last nights waffle dinner.

Waffles

These waffles are a relatively new recipe I came up with after reading “Good to the Grain“, a whole-grain baking book by Kim Boyce. She inspired me to dig deep in my pantry and experiment with a variety of flours in my baking. And oh Mama, am I glad I did! These waffles are so delicious, crisp on the outside, with the right amount of sweetness and none of the flours overpowering each other. To my favorite spelt flour, I added millet, amaranth and buckwheat flour for protein, barley for it’s blood-sugar stabilizing quality and b-vitamins and a little ground flaxseed for it’s omega-3 oils. Don’t worry if you don’t have all the different flours. Go ahead and experiment, you might come up with a recipe that will eventually be named after you and handed down generations…

After mixing the wet with the dry ingredients, I switched the waffle iron to the highest heat setting and brushed it with melted butter, to ensure crispy waffles. I then sprinkled the waffle iron with sesame seeds, which add a wonderful crunch. One set of waffles takes about 10 minutes, therefore it’s best to start early. Turn on your oven to a low setting and put the finished waffles next to each other on an oven rack, to keep them hot and crispy.

Makes 5 sets of waffles (2 each, see picture)

Ingredients

2 ounces (50g) butter, melted and cooled, to brush waffle iron

1/2 cup sesame seeds, to sprinkle over melted butter

Dry Mix:

  • 1 cup whole grain spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup white spelt flour
  • 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/4 cup amaranth flour
  • 1/4 cup barley flour
  • 1/4 cup millet flour
  • 1/4 cup freshly ground flaxseed
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Wet Mix:

  • 2 cups buttermilk (I didn’t have buttermilk, instead, I used 2 cups of fresh almond milk, mixed with 2 tablespoon lemon juice.You can substitute any milk for the almond milk. Let stand and do it’s thing for 5 minutes, before adding it to remaining ingredients)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons canola (rapeseed) oil

Method

Turn waffle iron on highest setting.

Mix dry ingredients and sift into large bowl.

In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients until well combined.

Gently combine wet and dry ingredients and let rest for a couple of minutes. The batter will start to bubble and thicken slightly.

Brush waffle iron and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Ladle batter onto waffle iron and sprinkle with more sesame seeds, so that both sides are covered in them. Close, and let bake for at least 5 minutes before taking your first peak. Every waffle iron is different, so just go with your experience on this one.

When waffles are done, either eat them straight away or put them on an oven rack to keep warm. Don’t put them on top of each other, as this will make them loose their crispiness.

Repeat process with remaining batter.

Serve with apple sauce.

These waffles make for a delicious breakfast the next day. Re-heat them in the toaster or just wrap them in foil and stick them in your kids lunch box.

A little trivia at the end. Did you know that you’re ready to get married once you manage to peel a whole apple in one go, without breaking the strip of apple peel? I think I was about 10 or 11 years old and mighty scared when I was told that it was time to get married. I probably didn’t touch another apple peeler for another decade, just to make sure that nobody would get the wrong idea.