Rise and Shine Breakfast (or a Bowl of Berry Goodness)

Nothing sets you up for a good day ahead better than a healthy nutritious breakfast. And this bowl of beautiful vivid purple oats, with flecks of almond slivers, does just the trick.

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Blueberries are known to be somewhat of a miracle berry. They contain anthocyanins –what gives blueberries such a deep purple colour –which act as powerful antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties. The darker the berries, the higher the level of this powerful phytonutrient. Blueberries are also rich in vitamin C, a great source of fibre and have a low glycaemic load.

Interestingly, frozen blueberries are almost as nutritious as fresh ones (especially if you can source flash frozen wild blueberries). And, even more curious, is that cooked berries have greater antioxidant level than fresh ones as the heat rearranges the structure of phytonutrients, making them more bioavailable.

I always have a few bags of wild blueberries on hand in my freezer – which come in useful in everything from a morning smoothie to an apple blueberry oat crumble.

Another item I always have in my pantry is a jar of steel cut oats (look for the quick cook ones, which take just 5 mins compared to 30 mins cooking time that the regular steel cut oats call for).

Steel cut oats are the least processed type of oat cereal. As a result of a different processing method, the benefits of steel cut oats exceed the benefits of rolled oats. While old fashioned rolled oats are made by steaming the toasted groats and then running them between rollers to create flakes, to make steel cut oats groats are passed through sharp, steel blades that cut them into thin slices, This not only helps retain more fibre and protein – making steel cut oats more dense and chewy – but gives them a lower glycemic index than rolled oats – prolonging the feeling of satiety after eating by preventing rapid peaks and dips in blood glucose level.

To make this nutritious (and immensely satisfying) breakfast, start with one measure of fast cook steel cut oats (I use McCann’s Irish Oatmeal, Quick & Easy Steel Cut Oats) and add 2 measures of water. Bring to simmer, stir and add one measure of almond milk. (I use half a small coffee cup per person as my measure). When the oats come to simmer add 2 large handfuls of wild frozen blueberries (straight from the freezer) and a pinch of pink Himalayan salt. Stir and cover for a minute while the berries defrost on low heat. Then add a teaspoon of honey, a tablespoon of chia seeds – a great source of healthy omega-3 fats and protein – and a heaped teaspoon of coconut butter. The coconut butter not only makes this blueberry oatmeal beautifully rich and creamy, but is also boosts your metabolism and immunity, destroys harmful bacteria and viruses and increases energy levels as it is packed with healthy, healing, medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) and essential amino acids. A great addition to this hearty breakfast bowl! Finally, serve sprinkled with slivers of raw almonds – another great source of healthy fats and proteins – before sitting down to enjoy and be ready to face the day with new energy.

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