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Start smart with breakfast

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After stress eating led to too much weight gain, I’ve been working hard during the past month to relearn healthy habits.

I’m proud to say I’ve lost 16 pounds and finally accepted that fad diets don’t lead to long-term weight loss — only learning how to live a healthy lifestyle does.

It’s easy to fall into a trap of wanting weight to come off as quickly as it can be put on, but with me at least, it’s an unrealistic expectation. And a lesson I wish I’d learned years ago.

Along with my recommitment to healthier habits I’m also developing a healthier attitude — that it’s human to slip up sometimes and OK to eat the comfort foods I love — as long as I eat them in smaller amounts and not every day.

I’ve also learned not to skip meals, eat snacks and start my day with a healthy breakfast.

A quick starter favorite of mine is scrambled egg whites with a little cheese, diced onion and red pepper. I can have it cooked and on a plate with fresh fruit in less time than it takes to brew coffee.

But eating the same thing every day gets boring, so I have added a few other meals to the mix, including oatcakes with raspberry compote. The pancake alternative takes longer to make, but it’s packed with whole grains and fiber that help keep me full all morning.

If you don’t like raspberries, you can always top the oatcakes with whatever fruit you do like or use syrup.

BUTTERMILK OATCAKES WITH RASPBERRY COMPOTE

Makes: 4 servings, 3 oatcakes & ¼ cup compote each

TOTAL Time: 45 minutes

Oatcakes

2 cups well-shaken buttermilk

1 large egg

1½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats

½ cup whole-wheat flour

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon salt

Raspberry Compote

2 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen (thawed)

2 tablespoons maple syrup, or to taste

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

To prepare oatcakes: Whisk buttermilk and egg in a medium bowl.

Combine oats, flour, sugar, baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon and salt in another medium bowl.

Stir the dry mixture into the wet mixture and let stand for 15 minutes. The mixture will bubble slightly as it sits. To prepare compote:

Place raspberries, maple syrup and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a small heavy saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the berries are mostly broken down, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cover to keep warm.

Note: Compote can be refrigerated up to one week in a covered container.

Coat a griddle or large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Using ¼ cup of batter for each, cook 3 oatcakes at a time until bubbles dot the surface, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip and continue cooking until browned, 1 to 2 minutes more, reducing heat if necessary to prevent overbrowning.

Serve the oatcakes with the compote.

Contact M. Clare Haefner at chaefner@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7551.

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