April 2018 · Breakfast Cure-Bowls of Ancient Wisdom

Archive Monthly Archives: April 2018

Mango Chia Breakfast Cure DIY Congee

Let’s make some DIY congee!

Hi, I’m Karen Taylor, acupuncturist, herbalist, and big-time foodie.

Welcome to another episode of Karen Taylor Vision.

My favorite thing is eating congee, sharing how to make it, and teaching what makes it so good for you. The secret is that it’s warm, cooked, and easy to digest. It’s delicious and soothing for sure. Today's 1 minute video shows you how to make DIY congee.

Coconut Mango Congee is on the menu for tomorrow morning, so I’m putting it together now, the night before.

Congee can be an exact science or you can wing it and enjoy the variation. Today, I’m finding my happy medium. But I've made congee thousands of times over 25 years, so measure away if that's your style or until you get your bearings.

Make Mango Chia Congee at home. It's easy!

All this water is key to hydrating your entire body, softening the fiber, soothing the stomach, and gently cleaning the intestines.

All this water is key to hydrating your entire body, softening the fiber, soothing the stomach, and gently cleaning the intestines.

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Fist of all, add the grains and seeds. 

Organic brown basmati-very low glycemic index for a grain. Won’t cause blood sugar spike and crash like refined carbs and many other whole grains.

Chia Seeds are an amazing superfood that are very hydrating. Chia absorbs up to 12 times their volume in water. Packed with healthy omega fatty acids that beautifully withstand the heat of a slow-cooker, chia is a great addition to congee.

Next, a pinch of pink Himalayan salt because a little salt is good to bring out the flavors and is good for most people. This pink salt is so beautiful and also has a bunch of extra minerals.

I love mango! This is some superb organic unsulphured fabulously delicious mango. This is dried. Fresh is always great too.

Finally, add 6 times water to grains. All this water is key to hydrating your entire body, softening the fiber, soothing the stomach, and gently cleaning the intestines.

Stir, Cover, Plug in, Turn to low . It's that easy. Your DIY congee cooks while you sleep.

Tomorrow we’ll see what delicious treat awaits in the morning.

Shop around for nuts that taste amazing and are not rancid.

One of the benefits for me of starting The Breakfast Cure is that I’ve sourced all these amazingly delicious ingredients and now I’m eating them every day and loving it. Plus, I get to have congee the extra lazy way with the pre-made bundles! The nuts really are the best. When you make congee at home with my DIY Congee Recipes, whatever you do, shop around for nuts that taste amazing and are not rancid. Bad nuts taste bad and are bad for you. Most nuts fall into this category.

Don’t be afraid of good fats like this yummy coconut butter.

Healthy fats are crucial for good health and taste delicious. Your brain needs it. All your cells need it. Don’t be afraid of good fats like this yummy coconut butter. This is whole coconut so I’m using a whole tablespoon for one person. It contains the fat as well as the meaty flesh of the coconut.

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The wisdom of Asian medicine is used to create a delicious healthy breakfast that boosts metabolism and soothes digestion. It's easy to make and cooks while you sleep so you wake up to an amazing breakfast ready and waiting.

Water Metabolism for healthy balance

A concept in Asian medicine that's really important for understanding how the breakfast cure works is water metabolism. It's part of your regular metabolism, but it's specific to what we would call the transformation and transportation of fluids. This matters because when it isn't working well in the body, bloating, water weight gain, and swelling are the result and who wants that?

Whole grains are excellent at resolving what we call "dampness." Warm foods are a good way to keep this dampness from originating in the first place. You really don't want this dampness because it makes you feel uncomfortable. It makes you feel sluggish, and it makes you feel tired. 

The major organs of digestion in Asian medicine are the Spleen and Stomach.

It's so important to keep our Spleen and Stomach happy. Foods that support the spleen and stomach are these warm foods that are easy to digest. Giving your whole digestive system a break, while delivering excellent nutrition, is one of the benefits of congee. 

Foods that support the spleen and stomach are these warm foods that are easy to digest. Giving your whole digestive system a break, while delivering excellent nutrition, is one of the benefits of congee. 

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Warm foods are healthy and boost metabolism

Boost your metabolic furnace by eating warm foods and by adding warming spices, such as ginger and nutmeg. I'll talk about that more another time, but we understand that there's both the temperature and the nature of food. The temperature is what you eat it at. Is it boiling, or is it freezing?

There's also the inherent nature that doesn't change. If you freeze ginger, or make it into ice cream, there's still this warming quality underneath it.

Same with cayenne or other hot spicy foods. Also, many of the more subtle, culinary spices like nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, are all excellent for digestion and warm the digestion and the system in general. You want to incorporate those whenever you can. You make cucumbers into soup. They're still gonna be cooling. If you're eating warm food that feels warm in your belly, you are on the right track.

I like to talk about the benefits of warm, well-cooked food because most people I talk to haven't thought much about how much of their diet is cooked versus how much is raw and cold. Yet, this is such an important distinction made in Asian nutritional wisdom. If you missed my article on the Yin and Yang of Digestion, I talk more about my beloved topic.

Break your fast wisely

First thing in the morning of course is one of the most important times to have a warming meal. You've just fasted overnight. To break this fast, the best thing you can do is have a really warm, nourishing breakfast that's easy to digest.

How much of your breakfast is cooked and how much is raw or cold? Leave a comment below and let me know. How did you get here? Do you base what you eat on information or on how it feels in your belly and the how it sustains your energy through the day? Is convenience and ease the biggest factor? 

Congee is comforting and satisfying for good reason.

“Cooking...
is something we have no choice but to do, if we are to feed our big, energy-guzzling brains. For our species, cooking is not a turn away from nature  - it is our nature, by now as obligatory as nest building is for the birds.”
— Michael Pollan, Cooked, A Natural History of Transformation