The Real Best Breakfast

*My new apartment is located almost directly above a small diner that so cleverly calls itself “Best Breakfast Place.” They serve slimy eggs, paper-towel-warranting bacon, and Texas toast at unheard-of-cheap prices, and ketchup out of No-Frills bottles, clearly purchased equally as cheaply directly across the street. Every time we eat there I usually leave feeling like a bag of smashed assholes. Thus, I present you: the real Best Breakfast.

Breakfast definitely is the best meal of the day—there’s nothing like that perfect mix of taste and satiety and the feeling that you’ve got something to power you through whatever you shall face in the next 16 hours. Unless dessert counts as a meal, of course.

My problem with breakfast? I’m always still hungry. (I guess that’s my problem most of the time.) But there’s no way I’m getting up an extra half-hour or so to cook oatmeal. I’m still working on the whole “morning person” thing.

So when Gena over at Choosing Raw posted this breakfast recipe last week, I knew I had to plot out my own version, ASAP. Though this breakfast’s not totally raw, it’s less cooked than your standard meal, and all the grains and pseudo-grains are soaked, making them easier to digest, so you feel satiated, but not bloated. Plus you can literally pour this bowl for yourself the night before, pop it in the fridge, then in the morning just stand and eat it, like, straight from the fridge. Gotta love fridge-eating. Total breakfast #win!

No-Sweat Overnight Oats 

(high raw, vegan, gluten-free if you use certified GF oats, soy-free sugar-free depending on your toppings)

Ingredients: – This list may appear intimidating but it’s totally customizable to your own tastes!

1/4 cup oats (I used steel-cut oats which are less processed than standard rolled oats)

1/4 cup quinoa flakes

1/4 cup chia cereal like Ruth’s or Holy Crap! brand, or 1/4 cup chia seeds

1 tbsp natural almond butter, cashew butter, or nut butter of your choice

1 banana, chopped

1 tsp hemp seeds

1 tsp sprouted flax

handful of walnuts

1 tbsp goji berries

1 tbsp cacao nibs

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 cup unsweetened almond milk or milk of your choice

optional: crumbs saved from making Perfectly Protein Chocolate Almond Butter Bars

Directions:

Pour all ingredients in a bowl and place in fridge overnight. in the morning, use a spoon to transfer ingredients from bowl to mouth. Chew, chew, taste, swallow, enjoy!

Crispy Carrot Crust Pizza: Part 1

Remember that time I posted a picture of a raw pizza that looked kinda delicious and drool-worthy?

Yeah. That one.

Well first off—it is that good (if I do say so myself). And secondly, it’s surprisingly easy to make—just so long as you have a food processor. (I bought mine on sale at Canadian Tire for $40 in the summer and never looked back.)

Raw food is gaining popularity as people seek it out for it’s natural health benefits. Basically, raw foods are supremely good for you because they retains all of the enzymes that are destroyed when food is cooked or heated—enzymes being the active parts of food that do good work inside of you including nutrients and minerals. Raw food is never heated higher that about 104 °F (40 °C)—so no ovens, stovetops, deepfryers, and definitely no microwaves. Since the enzymes in food remain intact, most people find it easier to digest, not to mention that (most) raw foods are gluten-free and dairy-free, a bonus for easy digestion.

Raw food, however, does require quite a bit of think-ahead prep work. Soaking, sprouting, and dehydrating are commonly overnight or day-long processes. But I can assure you they’re worth it.

I like a thin-crust pizza so that’s how I made mine. You could certainly make a deep-dish version of your own, just leave some extra time to heat this puppy.

Wait, heat? Yup—while raw food can’t be cooked, it can be warmed and for that most use a dehydrator, the same thing used to make fruit leathers, beef jerky, sun-dried tomatoes, etc. Food out of the dehyrdator will be warm, but not hot, and all enzymes remain intact. Unfortunately dehydrators can be expensive and quite bulky, so they’re an investment only if you will use them a lot. I’m not there, yet, so I use a little trick of the trade—my oven has a “warm” setting which heats to 150 °F. Once it reaches that temperature, I simply turn off the oven and put in my goodies. Easy! I’ve heard of others propping the oven door open with a wooden spoon to keep it cool. If that’s too risky or you don’t want to waste all the heat, most raw recipes can simply be cooked in a normal oven, just without the benefits of the results being raw.

If you do have a food processor, this is probably the easiest thing you’ll ever make. You only need patience, young grasshopper.

Carrot-Flax Pizza Crust or Crackers (raw, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free)

(adapted from Mama in the Kitchen)

Ingredients:

2 cups flax seeds

3 carrots, chopped roughly

3 cloves minced garlic

1 tablespoon sea salt

Directions:

Soak the flax seeds overnight (or about 8 hours) in 2 cups of water. (This helps them to thicken up and make a gel-like consistency to create a binding agent for the crust—flax “gel” takes the place of eggs in many vegan recipes.)

In food processor, combine soaked flax seeds, carrots, garlic, and sea salt and blend until desired consistency.

On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, spread the mixture flat with a spatula until desired thickness (or on a dehydrator and teflex sheet, if you have them). Warm for 6 hours, peel off mixture and flip over onto a fresh sheet of parchment paper, and warm another 6 hours. If you want crackers, score the mixture into desired size with a knife after it is flipped.

Store in the fridge. Keeps for 10-14 days.

You can eat this plain, spread with hummus, make into a sandwich with avocado, sprouts, and peppers, or wait for the pizza and raw, vegan cheese recipe that will follow later this week!