Adding quinoa to your everyday oats creates a more robust, hearty type and provides a nice change in pace from your normal everyday oatmeal. The plump oats melt in your mouth, due to an extended cooking time (not by too much), while the quinoa bits play on your tongue with the bubble-skinned berries. And these berries are something eclectic! It seems as though there’s a verdant Mulberry tree across my house, which has taken to staining the street blood red, and my fingers bruise blue. (They’ve been black for two days now. Lovely.) The darker the berry, the sweeter the juice; I picked up a slew of both colors for a variety of sweet and tenderness. That being said, feel free to use your own assortment of berries, playing around with different acids and textures. Maple syrup acts as not just a complimentary sweetener, but an enhancer to the nutty grains. A dash of cinnamon rounds things out, and a splash of milk after cooking goes a long way. Top it off with a bit of orange zest, if you’d like, for a bit of flare and a light summer touch. —Meghan
In a pot on the stove, combine the oats, quinoa, salt, and 1 cup of liquid. Bring to a gentle simmer, and cook on low heat while stirring. Continue to cook so that the grains absorb the liquid, and begin to plump up.
After about 5 minutes, most of the liquid will be gone, but the quinoa will still be hard. Add the rest of the liquid, vanilla, cinnamon, and maple syrup. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.
You'll know the grains are done when the liquid is gone and the quinoa looks like a little spiral. You can cook more or less, depending on your preferred tenderness. Turn off the heat and toss in the berries, giving them a gentle stir, just enough so that the heat up and become a bit jammy.
Transfer all to a bowl or dish. Top with orange zest, extra berries, a splash of milk, and/or maple syrup. Enjoy!