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Whole Grain Mornings:

New Breakfast Recipes to Span the Seasons

Breakfast is my favourite meal and I am a firm believer in its benefits – perhaps the most enforced rule in my house is that breakfast must always be eaten (there are other rules but that’s for another column).  Like everyone else, however, mornings in our house are busy, especially as we transition into the fall.  I was intrigued when I heard about Megan Gordon’s cookbook, Whole Grain Mornings, because it seemed to be promising everything that I find important – wholesome, delicious breakfasts that can accommodate today’s busy lifestyle.   And does it ever deliver. 

Author Megan Gordon is the owner of a granola company based in Seattle, but is originally from California.  This is evident through the recipes, which have a west coast flair.  The book starts with a basic introduction to a variety of grains and how to cook them.   The recipes are divided by season, (strawberry oat breakfast crisp in the spring and baked pumpkin risotto in the fall), but the recipes are adaptable and the author gives helpful suggestions and substitutions. 

Recipes are sweet and savory, quick and slow.  Interesting recipes include – apricot pistachio granola, oven baked asparagus, pea and farro frittata, yogurt cups with roasted black cherries and toasted millet, zucchini farro cakes, peanut butter crispy brown rice bars and banana walnut baked oatmeal.  The recipes are not complicated and the directions are clear.  I found it very helpful that many components or recipes can be made in advance.   For example, where a recipe calls for cooked grains, these can be made the night before and refrigerated.

As always, we tested some of the recipes to see whether they worked.  We tried the blueberry breakfast bars, greens and grains scramble and warm farro breakfast bowl with apples, cranberries and hazelnuts (we substituted almonds).  All were successful and we have made them repeatedly, all during the week.   I made the breakfast bars in the evening, portioned them and kept them in the fridge: A great breakfast with fresh fruit and yogurt or milk.  For the farro breakfast bowl, I made the apples and grains in advance (I used barley one time).  The dish only needed to be warmed and served with yogurt and almonds.  Same for the greens and grains scramble.  Delicious and filling breakfasts.  There were fights over the remaining breakfast bars, which is not a good thing but does indicate how popular they were, and that I have to do a better job with portioning. 
 
Truly, this cookbook is a keeper.  Recommended?  Absolutely, for anyone who enjoys breakfast as much as I do.