One-Pot Wonders

Millet Porridge for Today's NaturalĀ Goldi-Bear(s)

February 12, 2010
0 Ratings
  • Serves about 3 cups
Author Notes

I've never been keen on warm oatmeal to start my day, much preferring granola as the way to get the heart healthy benefits of a whole oat breakfast.The concept of something warm and creamy and spicy, though, is very compelling. Recently, the golden whole grain known as millet found space in my pantry because it's a nutrition packed powerhouse, and gave me a reason to embrace warm porridge made specifically for breakfast. It's a great source of B vitamins, has no gluten, is easy to digest, and has a mild and nutty flavor. Cooked in almond milk, and enhanced with spices, no one can resist! —Amber Olson

What You'll Need
  • For the porridge:
  • 1/2 cup millet
  • 3 cups almond milk
  • Combine the following to make the Spice Blend:
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground star anise
  • pinch of ground cloves
  1. To refresh your spices, put the blend into a dry skillet and toast over a low heat for a few minutes to release their fragrance. (This may be necessary only if you have spices that have been sitting in your pantry for an extended period of time.) Put millet in a dry skillet over medium heat and stir frequently to toast. It will take on a little color and smell a bit toasty. Remove to a bowl to stop any further browning. (This step isn't absolutely necessary but enhances the flavor of the finished porridge.)
  2. In a 1or 2 quart saucepan, bring almond milk to a boil. Add the millet, reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered over low heat about 30 minutes. You don't have to constantly stir but be attentive that it doesn't stick and start to burn. (Alternatively, a double boiler will solve this problem and free you up from the cooktop).When millet is tender and porridge is still slightly soupy, stir in 1 tsp. of the spice mix. Cook a bit longer if you prefer a thicker consistency. Serve warm, topped with any fresh or dried diced fruit.
  3. Variations: Millet can be cooked in fresh cold water. You will probably want to add a good pinch of salt at the beginning of the cooking process and some sweetener towards the end as well. Some type of nut topping with the fruit would also be appropriate.
Contest Entries

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • AntoniaJames
  • Amber Olson
    Amber Olson
  • Caty

8 Reviews

Caty October 9, 2012
I made this as a single serving with 1/4 cup millet and about 1 cup regular cows milk, which is all I had on hand. I also added some apples sauteed with cinnamon and toasted pecans, and it was delicious! The millet was a bit hard even though I cooked it for the suggested amount of time, so next time I might soak the millet before cooking it. Overall, a deliciously simple and satisfying dish. Perfect for a cool autumn afternoon!
AntoniaJames February 15, 2010
Thank you, Amber. Fortunately, I have freshly (of yesterday) spices left over, so I'm going to try again this morning, adjusting the cardamom down (tasting and adding more if I feel like it). I did not sift the star anise, but it was fairly fine and I couldn't tell the difference when eating it. Stay tuned! ;o)
AntoniaJames February 14, 2010
I made this today and used whole star anise and cardamom seeds, which I toasted (separately), then ground. I should have known that the proportions would not be right, in using the freshly ground spices. The cardamom overwhelmed all of the other spices, and the flavor of the millet. I used 1 cup of water and 1 1/2 cups of almond milk, and was pleased with the consistency and texture. Millet, especially when toasted before cooking, is so nice as a hot cereal. I plan to make this again, perhaps even tomorrow, but with only a tiny pinch each of the cardamom and star anise that I toasted and ground today.
Amber O. February 15, 2010
I wish you could smell my finished product, especially since I tried a number of combinations before I ended up with the one I published. I started with cardamon seeds out of the pods that I purchased at my local co-op. They were some of the most aromatic that I've ever worked with and after toasting and grinding, yielded a finished powder that was intensely perfumed but not sharp. And the star anise I used was also freshly purchased, whole stars, and I sifted the spice after grinding to get only the finest of the powder. So we both toasted each spice separately but I ground each one separately, too. Then I assembled the mix. I still have my notes for each tasting before I settled on what tasted good to me. I can only surmise that my measurements were not spot on (accurate) but more fluffy and airy even with measuring spoons! Kind of like using flour that you lightly aerate but not sift before spooning it out for use.Sorry it didn't work for you as printed. I can't change that for the contest, but your feedback will certainly help others find the right level of spice to suit themselves. O, and I do LOVE cardamon!
AntoniaJames February 13, 2010
You are too kind. Thank you. By the way, I've been thinking all week about how lovely it would be to incorporate the mild sweet spiciness of chai into a porridge. And then you posted this! The addition of star anise is brilliant, by the way. I plan to grind and mix a week's worth of the spice mix this weekend . . . . and of course I'm going to experiment with using some to flavor my chai! I'm also going to pick up some millet, as I used the last of mine in a multigrain loaf last weekend. Thanks again. Your recipes are lovely.
Amber O. February 13, 2010
Oh my go(sh), just read the whole Amanda post on Chai spices.Whew, last night as I was writing this recipe concept, I changed the heading from Chai Tea Spices to just Spice Blend because I was uncomfortable with a broad term that I was sure had many variations. I created my spice mix on taste alone, actually using cardamon, cloves and star anise that I freshly ground. The aromatics that result are difficult to replicate with off the shelf or stale spices. My suggestion to toast what spices you have will hopefully help others appreciate all the nuances that spices have to offer.
AntoniaJames February 12, 2010
Very nice! Millet is greatly underappreciated. Haven't thought to cook it in almond milk, but what an excellent idea. Thank you for posting this.
Amber O. February 13, 2010
Of all the cooks contributing their feedback on food52, none are more appreciated, for me, than one coming from you. Love your recipes, but the thoughtful encouraging comments to all the participants you find time to view make this site all the better. Thanks back at you!