Broats with Olive Oil

broc

Broats? You ask? Short for broccoli rabe oats. Thought it had a nice ring to it. You see, when it comes to food, I’m about as unpicky as you get. And yet, the one thing I really can’t be convinced to eat is oatmeal. Bland and blah, you’d think it’d be pretty inoffensive. But like a vegan at Peter Luger’s, it’s just not my thing.

Until…enter broccoli rabe. Peppery and slightly bitter, I stirred my leftover  broccoli rabe pesto into a packet of oatmeal and added a drizzle of olive oil and a generous crank of pepper. Suddenly, I became an oatmeal convert. And unlike everything else in my edible life, it didn’t even take crusty french bread and a bloody mary to convince me.

Creamy Triple Almond Breakfast Smoothie

My friends at California Almonds hooked me up with a bundle of goodies recently, so I decided to experiment pushing the almond-lope, erm, envelope with some smoothie recipes. After a few rounds of tinkering, this nutrient-packed gem hits the right balance of sweet, creamy goodness with a layer of nutty earthiness.

INGREDIENTS:
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup almond slivers
2 tablespoons unsalted almond butter
1 banana
1/4 cup mixed berries
1/4 cup kale
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon flax seeds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 ice cubes

Blend until smooth. Happy gulping!

Purple Pecan Power Shake

So easy you can toss this one together without even trying. Guess I could also call this a basil-berry shake. Quoi-ever.

 

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (I use So Delicious)
  • 1/2 cup frozen unsweetened blackberries (I use Earthbound Farm Organic)
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecan pieces
  • 1 banana
  • Handful frozen kale
  • handful fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter (okay, maybe 2)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • shake or two of cinnamon
  • a few drops of pure vanilla extract
  • basil sprigs for garnish
  • 3 ice cubes
Blend to desired texture.

 

Vegan Breakfast Recipe: Hungover Okra Toast

The old Perri used to crave an everything bagel with the works: lox, juicy tomato slices, globs of cream cheese, capers, freshly squeezed lemon. Times two. The new Perri? All I want is a giant hunk of this oh-so-simple okra toast.
                        

First, let’s address okra. So underrated! This warm-season veggie, also known as “ladies fingers,” is low calorie, rich in vitamin C, and packed with magnesium, Vitamin A and calcium to boot. You can stir fry it, gumbo it, bake it, eat it raw, and do about a billion and a half delicious things with it. My favorite thing is a quick sauté over medium heat with a boatload of seasonings.

For all you hungover souls craving salvation, I assure you, this simple recipe sops up the vodka-fueled pain just as well as any overloaded bagel. Even better: You don’t wind up with that overindulgent double hangover feeling come nighttime.

Tender seasoned okra melds with a generous swirl of canned tomatoes and creamy avocado, while hearty black beans soak up the previous night’s bad decisions and give you a needed protein and fiber dose… all blanketed over a crunchy canvas of toasted rye bread, and finished with a generous squeeze of lemon for a note of acidity and brightness. Sounds a lot fancier than it is. It also might sound a bit weird, but don’t knock it until you try it, I promise it’s really, really good. Or maybe I’m just really hungover. Either way, here we go:

Ingredients
2 pieces rye bread
1/2 cup raw okra
1/2 cup canned black beans (preferably no salt added)
1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes
1/4 ripe avocado (when would a recipe ever call for a not-yet-ripe avocado? I’m not sure but it seemed like the right thing to say), cut into small slices
1 tablespoon olive oil (for sautéeing)
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon chipotle
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Lemon wedge

Assembly:

1. Ensure you’re sober enough to not accidentally walk towards the toaster with your okra and towards the pan with your rye bread.

2. Heat olive oil in pan. Add okra, paprika and chipotle (and whatever seasonings you like). Sautée for about five minutes over medium-high heat until it begins to brown. Add canned tomatoes and black beans and reduce heat to medium. Let sit for a few minutes.

3. Meanwhile, toast your bread (in a toaster, not a pan). Spread smushed avocado wedges over bread, which has now emerged as toast. Transfer warmed up bean and vegetable mixture from pan to plate. Squeeze a generous amount of lemon over everything. Resist desire to add olive oil and sea salt. Crank out the pepper mill and grind over mix until happy. Eat and take a milk thistle supplement (alleged liver helper) for good measure.

One-Step Cinnamon Apple Pie Pudding

Okay, fine. Two Step (OMG, DMB reference) if you count putting it in the fridge. If that’s too much effort for you, I don’t know what to say folks. And don’t let the recipe name above fool you into thinking this is just a swirl of calorie and sugar-loaded decadence. Quite the opposite: Fiber. Check. Whole grains. Check. Protein. Check.


Overnight Apple Pie Breakfast Pudding
•1 container (6 oz) plain Greek Style yogurt (such as So Delicious Greek Style Plain Almond Milk Yogurt)
•1/3 cup Grape Nuts Cereal
•¼ cup diced green apple
•½ cup vanilla almond milk
•2 Tablespoons slivered almonds
•2 teaspoons chia seeds
•¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Add all ingredients in a pint size mason jar. Secure lid and shake well. Store in refrigerator overnight. Enjoy chilled for breakfast the next morning.

Note: I adapted the original recipe slightly and added more cinnamon, a teaspoon of flax seeds and a drizzle of agave nectar. Feel free to play with the fruits (raspberries or blueberries would be a welcome swap for apples) and nuts (walnuts work well too).

Recipe and photography courtesy of Kristina VanniFor more great recipes check out www.Grape-Nuts.com or www.Facebook.com/GrapeNutsCereal.