I’m celebrating Passover this week, and it’s been rough! I’m actually not very religious – I consider myself a “cultural Jew,” meaning I enjoy the traditions and celebrating holidays with my family, but I didn’t grow up going to temple or anything. But I always like a challenge, so Passover is perfect! I haven’t been too strict – basically just no bread, wheat (besides whole wheat matzoh) or oatmeal. That one was tough – seeing all the delicious bowls of oatmeal on all the food blogs has nearly killed me! But I’m almost done, so a big bowl of oat bran with almond butter, or peanut butter, or lemon curd, or butter and a poached egg (my favorite) has my name on it tomorrow!
I just really wanted a big bowl of something warm with a lot of flavors today, so I decided on quinoa porridge – since quinoa is a seed, it is technically allowed. Yay!
I’ve made quinoa porridge before from this recipe out of Clean Eating, but I decided to mix things up and make it even more Passover-esque: charoset-inspired quinoa porridge! I’ve been craving charoset since Red Head, Yellow Dog posted about it, and thought it would be awesome to incorporate into this breakfast.
If you haven’t heard of it, charoset represents the mortar used by enslaved Jews in Egypt. It is traditionally made of chopped apples, cinnamon, walnuts and sweet red wine (hello, Manischewitz). Sometimes it contains honey, sometimes lemon, sometimes dried fruit. I decided to incorporate all these things, except the red wine because 1. I don’t have any open and 2. I had to go to work after eating breakfast.
Here’s what I did. The recipe takes about 30 or so minutes, so it’s great to double it. I usually make this with berries as well, but I don’t have any right now. Can’t wait until the Farmers Market!
1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup water
Milk or yogurt
Chopped nuts – I usually used pecans but went with walnuts today
Agave nectar or honey (optional)
Toppings of your choice!
Bring water and quinoa to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Be careful to turn the temperature low enough so that it doesn’t burn – mine did, a little bit, but it worked out ok.
Uncover and add a good splash of yogurt. I usually use milk, but I’m out so I used Wallaby Vanilla Bean. I also added a splash more water, and let it simmer 10 min uncovered.
Turn off heat and add chopped apple (I used a small one from my CSA), chopped walnuts (bought in bulk!) and cover for 10 min. Or less if you’re impatient! Add toppings and enjoy!
I mixed in a little bit of honey, and topped my bowl with golden raisins (I like them better on top so they’re still chewy!) and a dollop of lemon curd. Since charoset occasionally calls for lemon, what better use for my delicious, locally-made lemon curd?
With the honey, yogurt, lemon curd and raisins, I must admit this was a very sweet bowl. I think it would have been better if I’d just used milk. Adjust to taste!