We are a privileged generation, we have everything in abundance, from clothing and beauty to food in all its various forms, but because of the array of products we are slowly beginning to suffocate under the pile of waste that accompanies them. I doubt that 2.5 billion years ago in the stone age cavemen popped in and out of Tesco whenever they fancied berries or any other product not in season – they simply survived off of what was available to them. We have been created in a way that allows our bodies to thrive off the foods we have seasonally, without needing to indulge in imported tropical fruits in mid-December.
Eating seasonally can support your bodies natural nutritional needs; in the winter we crave all of the hearty flavours that root vegetables provide, these are high in vitamin C which helps fight off the flues we are all vulnerable to. The summer produce is high in beta-carotene, and so it helps our bodies fight off the invasive sun rays and protect our skin. Eating seasonally is smart, this way one takes advantage of the foods that are in abundance, and at a cheaper price than out of season, making seasonal eating economically inviting.
If you shop seasonally there is also a good chance the products you buy will have a higher nutritional value and significantly fewer food miles. It’s simple, growing berries in the winter is near impossible because the conditions simply aren’t correct and therefore, farmers resort to spraying their crops, using copious amounts of energy to heat them, or import products from overseas where the climate is better. The result? Bland tasting fruits and vegetables that are deprived of the nutrient profiles they would otherwise develop if growing in their natural conditions, yet their prices remain high which means us consumers are getting less for more.
We have rhubarb in abundance all through spring, and so we should take advantage of it as much as we can, and incorporate the vibrant vegetable (mic drop – it’s a vegetable) into as many dishes as we can. Shopping seasonally is one of the best things we as consumers can do in order to reduce pollution, support the climate, and your local hard-working farmers, and so why wouldn’t you do it? There is no reason for you to not pick up seasonal produce from your local farmers market, grocers or even package free at the supermarket; shopping seasonally is easy enough, all it requires making mindful decisions.
Fruit crumble has always been a favourite of mine – as a child I’d ask for it every weekend and admittedly, I’d only ever eat the crumble topping leaving the juicy fruit behind, but luckily our tastebuds grow up with us. This breakfast is essentially that: rhubarb crumble in disguise!
The combination of oats, cinnamon, maple syrup, and fruits give the most satisfying warm flavour, and the oat milk and banana provide a decadent soft texture that is simply irresistible. These oats are close to having the texture of a chewy oat cookie, and the flavour of a crumble pudding, but carry the goodness of a bowl of porridge – it’s a win-win for everyone. If you are a fruit crumble, oat cookie, granola, or porridge lover, then you have to add these baked oats to your list.
The king in this recipe is the rhubarb, I use one medium sized stalk for one portion, but feel free to double, or even triple the recipe, and bake it in a larger dish to make a family breakfast or pudding out of it! These rhubarb baked oats can also be modified to suit yours and your family favourite flavours – why not swap the rhubarb for any other seasonal fruits such as summer berries, or perhaps mix in some chopped nuts and chocolate to create a cookie-skillet type of breakfast? I will leave the flavour combinations to your imaginations, but know there are no limits with this recipe!
1/2 mashed banana
1/2 cup oat milk
1/2 cup of oats
1/2 teaspoon of chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 stalk of rhubarb
Preheat the oven to 180℃.
In a bowl mash the banana and combine with the oat milk. Chop the rhubarb stalk and fold it through the wet mix (leave a couple larger pieces for decoration).
Next, combine all of the dry ingredients and add them to the wet, mixing well until everything is well distributed.
Transfer the mix into a small oven-proof dish, flatten, and decorate with the remaining half of banana (chopped into coins) and rhubarb. Place in the center of the oven and bake for 18 minutes until golden and risen slightly.
Let cool 5 minutes before serving with your favourite plant-based yogurt, nut butters or drizzle of maple syrup!
I appreciate all of your thoughts about my recipes, so please like and comment this post, and if you recreate anything tag me on Instagram @wikis.wital.way