Breakfast of Warriors

By • February 8, 2010 7 Comments

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Author Notes: After eating steel cuts oats with milk and some jam for a while now, I decided to mix things up. Over a year ago, I re-discovered quinoa and how quick it is to prepare. I'm a huge fan of the red quinoa, preferring its nuttier and sweeter taste and relishing the benefits of its supergrain status. It should come as no surprise that Inca warriors were sustained by "war balls," (quinoa and fat) during their battles. I figured if the Inca warrior could survive marching for days on this, then this would at least give me a great start to my 9-5 job.

Add your favorite mix-ins like soymilk, cranberries, apricots, walnuts, agave syrup, yogurt, and (for TJ’s fans) more exotic flavors like dried mango, papaya, and banana or apple chips, and you've got a super powerhouse breakfast.

There are various ways of cooking steel cut oatmeal in order to make it less time consuming to cook in the morning. I know some people like to partially pre-cook it the night before by soaking it (haven’t tried this method.) I find it just as easy to cook a batch large enough to last for four days, simply keep it refrigerated, and reheat a portion in the morning. It keeps just fine if you eat it within a week, which is never a problem if you love it and have it daily. I recommend cooking the quinoa and oatmeal separately (because they finish at different times) and then combining them once they’re done.

Serves 4-8 servings

Red Quinoa

  • 2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup quinoa

Steel Cut Oatmeal

  • 4-5 cups water
  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  1. Before you cook either red or yellow quinoa, soak it in cold water to get rid of the dust and alleviate some of the bitterness. As quinoa is such a fine grain, it will stick easily to a pan. I find it convenient to put the portion in a fine mesh colander and then put the colander into cold water. Once the water runs clear, you can cook your quinoa. It will not take very long—about 10-12 minutes.
  2. For the steel cut oats: Let the water come to a boil, add the oatmeal and stir it for 5 minutes. Turn down the heat slightly and let it continue to cook for another 15-25 minutes, depending on your desired level of texture. Combine the cooked oatmeal with the quinoa and add fruit and nuts of your choice. To this version, I added pumpkin seeds, tart cherries, golden raisins and a drizzle of milk.

More Great Recipes: Breakfast & Brunch|Rice & Grains|Quinoa

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