Wednesday 21 March 2018

A breakfast to make you rise and shine

Aine McAteer

Call me obsessed or possessed, but my life seems to revolve around meals -- if I'm not cooking them I'm dreaming about them, shopping for them, planning them, talking about them or looking forward to them.

One meal ends and my mind wanders to the next. This is in part a function of my life as a cook, but also because I simply love my food.

In childhood, I was motivated to get up earlier than my siblings so that I could scrape off the cream that had coagulated on top of the can of milk to have on my porridge for breakfast. Porridge was a great excuse to indulge in my favourite foods: butter, sugar and cream.

Breakfast was a simple affair -- we never ventured far beyond a big bowl of porridge, except on Sundays when dad was at the helm and all the stops were pulled out. Sunday was the day of the fry-up, and everything was fried -- sausages, eggs, bacon, black pudding and even the bread. I'm sure our livers and waists were relieved that Sunday came but once a week!

When I first started to explore the world of macrobiotics and look for alternatives to sugar, butter, milk and cream, it was breakfast that provided the biggest challenge.

Many of us are so pushed for time in the morning that this meal is often simply a cup of coffee to jump-start our engines and a piece of toast with butter and marmalade. This will give you energy for a minute, but before long you'll be getting that mid-morning slump as your blood-sugar drops and you need your second cup. This puts a lot of stress on the body.

If I were to give you my number-one health tip, it would be to get up early enough to have time to sit down for a healthy and wholesome breakfast.

I'm aware that time is an issue for many, especially for busy parents trying to get the kids dressed, fed and off to school, so a bit of pre-planning makes a big difference. Pancake and waffle mixes, for example, can be prepared the night before.

Here, I've given you a one of my favourite breakfast recipes -- Chunky Funky Granola -- which I hope will inspire you to start your day the healthy way!

Irish Independent

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