Monday, March 4, 2013

Waking Up is Hard to Do

"Coffee & Fruit" Breakfast Quinoa
(Or...Breakfast Quinoa Base with Infinite Room for Variation)
It's about 15 minutes past the point I should have fallen asleep in order to be re-charged for a long day in the lab tomorrow, but I can't sleep.  We just put a deposit down on a house today, and I'm scheming. Breakfast Scheming.  Breakfast is a pain for me.  I hate waking up earlier than I have to.  I have been known to skip breakfast, to occasionally use dry shampoo instead of a morning shower, and to keep a toothbrush in my car for those mornings when I have to wake up and fly out the door in less than 2 minutes to get to work on time....I know.  I know.
BUT.  Since I discovered my new breakfast routine, things have a bit been better.  I already know that this is the breakfast I'm going to make in some variation for the new house almost daily, and that since it gets ME out of bed, its sure to get The Buck to wake up, too.  Cooking anything IN coffee is a great way to make your house smell insanely good in the morning, too:-)

Now, there are those who argue that you should cook quinoa for breakfast overnight to just grab-and-go in the morning.  You might think I would agree, given my ill adaptation to morning times...I do not.  I would rather eat this-piping hot, while sipping coffee and reading the news- than bring anything to the office to re-heat.  For one thing, there is a definite mushiness associated with re-warmed breakfast cereal type foods that I do not find appealing.  For another, taking the extra half hour in the morning gives me energy and sets the tone for a great day. Especially with a breakfast like this that doesn't leave me stalking the pastry bar at 9:05....

It's not a new concept, but this is my favorite version to date.  If you prefer the 1:2 ratio of quinoa to liquid, be my quest and add more coffee or water as you like.  If you like raspberries, use them mixed with Berry Cobbler Coffee.  If you hate bananas, dont add them. As always, guidelines only:

2/3 cup obscenely flavored coffee (my personal favorite is anything Bananas Foster flavored, but depending on what you add later you can be quite inventive)
1/3 cup water
1-2 tbsp cream or coffee creamer  (I do 1 tbsb cream with a dash of vanilla extract just because I try to avoid HFCS, but I've honestly done this with flavored coffee creamer and it works just as well, all depends on how healthy you feel like being on a given morning)
1 Cinnamon Stick, if available  
2/3 cup quinoa-rinsed!
2 Tablespoons Dried Blueberries
1 Tablespoon Coconut Flakes
1 Teaspoon dried pumpkin seeds
1 Tablespoon Walnuts
  (I just have little measuring spoons in these jars already, but any size spoon will do, really)
1/2 Banana, sliced
Brown Sugar, to taste

Combine coffee, water, cream, cinnamon stick, and quinoa in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil. Once boil has been reached, turn down the heat and simmer from 15-25 minutes-depending on your desired doneness-with a lid slightly ajar to allow steam to escape. 
Gives you the perfect amount of time to do hair, makeup, brush teeth, and begin to peruse the morning news or crossword puzzle...

Return to stove and fluff quinoa with a fork. Add blueberries, pumpkin seeds, and walnuts, and stir to combine. Line the bottom of a bowl with sliced banana. Transfer quinoa to the bowl, top with a small amount of cream, and brown sugar to taste. It's about as tasty as one could expect quinoa to be in a breakfast, and it's a great powerhouse to start your day

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About Me

Jacksonville, Florida
Here's my story: I have resigned myself to the fact that I will remain in Jacksonville for another 2 years, biding my sweet time until my boyfriend completes his Coast Guard tour. Harumph. So, you might wonder, what does one do when they determine that they're willingly sacrificing their personal freedom in a flagrant defiance of all things they once felt defined their sense of self? Well, I am here to tell you. They mourn their past life in which food and culture played a significant role. They cry over the unavoidable truth that Jacksonville has about as much culinary charm as one might expect from a city that venerates "Salt Life" and believes Town Center is full of fine dining. Shudder. And then they cook. A lot. And write. A lot. Because they need an outlet. That's me- I need an outlet. And Cooking and Writing are IT. So while I wouldn't dream of telling anyone in person that I'm scared of the next 2 years, at least I can put it out there somewhere and get it off my chest. Phew! And at least I have someplace to document all of this cooking I'm doing now that I'm 1200 miles away from all of my favorite take out ;-) Silver linings abound.