April All Natural Day 9 and Banana Bread Oatmeal
Day 9! Another Thursday, which means Chemistry at 8am again… but it also means I finished classes at 12 and got to spend the rest of the afternoon hanging out with the coolest mom ever. Since day 9 wasn’t particularly interesting (we spent the afternoon out and about because it was a cold and yucky day, not ideal for gardening), I’ll give you a little post about how I prepare my breakfasts and lunches throughout the week!
My breakfast is 9 times out of 10 some flavor of oatmeal. As of now you’ve probably caught on to what my top 2 favorite flavors are. Those are my favorites because apples and bananas are 2 fruits that I just absolutely love. Occasionally I’ll make blueberry or strawberry. Peach hasn’t been made in a long time because I used up my whole bag of chopped peaches from the freezer already! I need to pace myself next time and not eat them all so quickly. Or freeze 2 bags of them instead of 1… I think I like the second option better. I decided to have banana oatmeal before class because it’s a lot quicker than the apple one since the apples need to be washed and sliced, then chopped. Plus, the banana one keeps me full longer, which is a plus since I eat around 7:15 am and don’t get home for lunch until 12:15 or later. So here is my basic banana oatmeal recipe:
Simple Banana Bread Oatmeal
- 1/2 Cup Rolled Oats (Gluten Free if necessary)
- 1 1/4 Cups Non-Dairy Milk or Water
- 1 Ripe Banana (I usually use a huge one)
- 1/4 Cup Golden Raisins (or regular, I just prefer golden)
- 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1/8 Teaspoon Allspice
- 1/4 Teaspoon Vanilla
- 1/2 – 1 Teaspoon Molasses (if you don’t like molasses, use maple syrup or other sweetener of choice)
Stove Top Directions:
Place the liquid and the oats in a small saucepan. There are 3 ways you can do the banana: 1) I like to take half of the banana, cut it lengthwise, then cut it into slices into the pot with the oats and liquid, which was water this morning. Then I take the other half of the banana and put whole slices on the bottom of my bowl to pour the oatmeal on top of them. See the pictures below for these instructions. 2) Cut the whole banana in half lengthwise, then cut the whole thing into slices into the pot. 3) Mash the banana, then add it to the pot. All of these work, but the first two methods are my preferred way, so you get random little bites of banana, just like you do in banana bread. Add the raisins to the pot and give everything a good stir. Next add the cinnamon and allspice and stir again. Place the pot on the stove and bring the oatmeal to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. If you’re impatient or in a hurry, you can do this over high heat, then reduce to medium heat once it boils, but it won’t get as creamy. Once it starts to bubble you will need to stir it more often. Continue to cook the oats until it reaches your desired consistency. Remove from the heat and add the vanilla and molasses. Transfer to a bowl and enjoy.
Add the oats and liquid to a small jar, reducing the liquid to 1 cup. Mash the banana and add it to the jar, along with the remaining ingredients. Add 2 tablespoons of chia seeds, put a lid on, and give it a good shake. Place the jar in the refrigerator overnight and eat in the morning. If you’d like, you can warm in up in the microwave for a minute or so before eating.
On Tuesdays and Thursdays I usually come home for lunch and have leftovers from whatever we had for dinner the previous night. However, if there aren’t any leftovers I make a simple soba noodle salad or some sweet potatoes. For the soba noodles, cook the noodles according to the package and rinse with cold water when done. Chop up various veggies, such as cucumbers, radishes, carrots (which I do in ribbons), tomatoes, etc. Add in the noodles, some spinach or lettuce, edamame, chopped cilantro, and green onions, then drizzle with some sort of sauce. My favorites are a simple miso tahini dressing, which is equal parts miso and tahini with a bit of water to thin it out and garlic powder (or use the blender and add an actual garlic clove if you’re not lazy like me) or a peanut dressing, which is roughly 3 tablespoons of peanut butter, 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 clove of garlic, 1/4 inch knob of ginger, 1 tablespoon of lime juice, and up to 1 tablespoon of maple syrup or agave. These are just rough measurements because I don’t usually measure it :P. Right now I have a container of each of these dressings in the fridge for just such an occasion.
On days where I have sweet potatoes, I pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit, then pop the potato in for an hour or so, depending on the size of the potato. When I take them to school I put it in the oven while I get ready and eat breakfast, but if I’m home by 11 or so, I’ll cook it right before lunch. You can make as many as you want, but I usually make them one at a time so I don’t end up wasting any.
For dinner we had the Cast Iron Stir Fry from Isa Does It, which was delicious, but I would probably double the sauce next time. Then I had an apple later, which I chopped up, poured coconut nectar all over, and microwaved for about 1.5 minutes, then drizzled with more coconut nectar. It was sooo good.
Doesn’t that just look delicious??? Ok, it probably doesn’t in this lighting, but it was fantabulous.
Remember, if you decide to play along with us on our April All Natural Challenge, tag your posts with #AprilAllNatural!