Serves 2 / about 800g of porridge
- 120g whole millet
- 500 ml fresh water
- 50g dry fruits such as raisins, chopped dates, figs or apricots
- 30g shredded flax seeds (preferably shredded fresh, as they go rancid very quickly when stored at room temperature!)
- 50g almond butter, nut butter or coconut milk
- Cinnamon, cardamom, vanilla or other spices – go crazy 🙂
- Pinch of salt
STEP 1: Wash the millet seeds well in a strainer, cover generously with water and soak them overnight. This reduces cooking time and makes the seeds – like all whole grains – more digestible.
STEP 2: After 6-12 hours soaking, drain the millet, discard the soaking water, transfer the millet to a saucepan and add 500ml fresh water. You may have to add more water later, as the seeds soak up A LOT of water while cooking. Bring to boil, switch off the heat and leave with the lid closed for 10 minutes to soak up the remaining liquid.
Some larger millet varieties may require you to reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes before switching off. The larger the grains of your millet variety, and the softer you like the porridge, the more you need to cook it. Don’t stir while the heat is on, as this will make it burn more easily. Check carefully for the water level and add some more hot water if needed. If you haven’t had time to soak the grains, cook a little longer. If you’re using millet flakes, just soak them for 15 minutes and bring to a brief boil.
STEP 3: Add the other ingredients – dry fruits, seeds, nut butter and spices and mix well. Your basic porridge is ready!
The earlier you add the dry fruits the softer/ soggier they get. You might want to add more hot water at this stage (did I mention that millets soak up A LOT of water…?), and also again later on if you’re leaving the porridge for a while before eating (for instance on a buffet).
Porridge Flavours & Variations
Once your basic porridge is ready, feel free to pimp it to perfection with your own favourite mix of goodies – sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chopped nuts and almonds, chia seeds, home-made vegan nutella, cashew butter, cinnamon, vanilla, cocoa, lucuma….
You could also add:
- Any plant-based milk such as almond mylk, oat or millet drink etc. If you’re making your own it might strike you as absurd to spend time first filtering out the bits (e.g. the ground almonds in almond milk) only to add the nice clear milk to something grainy again… just use a spoon of almond butter for extra creaminess instead!
- Fresh chopped fruit such as apple, pear, banana etc. If your digestion is sensitive, it’s generally recommended to always eat fruits separately at least half an hour before any other food, because the fructose is digested more quickly than other foods.
- Of course, no one says this needs to be sweet: If you prefer a savoury breakfast, try adding in an extra pinch of salt, some small carrots cubes, peas, curry leaves and roasted split channa dal to make a wholesome Upma (a popular Indian breakfast dish).
Now enjoy your porridge, and share your favourite variations in the comments below!
If you’re interested in learning more about the nutritional and agroecological awsomeness of millets, check out my slightly outdated article on millet consumption in India here: http://www.thealternative.in/lifestyle/no-quinoa-for-me-thanks/ (They also grow them in Europe, ask you local organic shop to find out more!)