Blueberry Amaranth Porridge

Hello all! It’s been a long time! The last few months have been a little bit crazy. First, I was out-of-state for a month of training at a children’s hospital. Not having access to all my kitchen supplies meant I really couldn’t do much “fancy” cooking. I was essentially living on salads and omelets except on the days that ate out with my friends. Not much exciting food to write about during that month.

amaranth-grains

After that, I was studying for my Step 2 CK. For those of you who are blissfully unaware of what that is, allow me to explain. In order to become a board certified physician in the US, you have to take…well, the boards. These exams are split up into Step 1, Step 2 CK, Step 2 CS, and Step 3. All of these exams last 9 hours each. It feels like a marathon, not that I’ve ever run one. So in August, I took the Step 2 CK, which is a written test of the material that I should have learned in the last 3 years of my medical education. Needless to say, I was spending hours upon hours studying for it. There was little time for any cooking. Thank goodness I live at home with my mother to feed me when I go into my study cave.

adding-the-blueberries

But did the madness stop there? No, no it did not. Because you see, 2 weeks later I had to take the Step 2 CS, which is a practical exam. How does this work? Do the examiners just follow me around the hospital one day to decide that I am capable of becoming a doctor? I wish. That would have been simpler. Instead, we go to special examination centers (there are only 5 in the country) where they hire actors to pretend to be patients. And we examine, diagnose, counsel, and come up with a treatment plan for them. At this point in my training, it feels completely natural to do all these things with a real patient. But in the examination center, I know that I’m being judged for everything I say and do…it’s a super awkward experience. Glad to be done with that!

time-to-mash

Surely, that must be the end of it, you say? Alas, no. Because 2 days later, I had to submit my applications for residency. In the US, after finishing medical school, you have to undergo several years of on-the-job training in a particular field of your choosing. This is called residency. So in the midst of all my studying for the Step 2, I was also trying to scrap together my personal statement and CV while picking programs to apply to. I have no idea how I managed to get through the last few months without a breakdown. Medical school has clearly made me into a tougher cookie.

or-blend

Speaking of cookies…let’s get back to the food talk. Too bad this particular recipe isn’t for cookies. It would have been the perfect transition. But it’s was still a fun and easy recipe. It’s basically a twist on the Banana Amaranth Porridge recipe that I posted what feels like ages ago. But this time, with blueberries, which gives it a nice pop of color!

ungarnished-bowl

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup amaranth
  • 1 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 large banana, sliced
  • 1/2 cup shelled pistachios, roughly chopped

Instructions:

  1. In a pan, bring amaranth, chia seeds, and almond milk to a boil. Then, reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the pan. Let it cook for about 10 minutes, until the amaranth becomes soft but some of the liquid has not yet been absorbed.
  2. Add blueberries to the porridge. Crush with either a masher or an immersion hand blender. I ended up using both in order to make a smooth mixture.
  3. Remove from heat and garnish with banana and pistachios. Enjoy!

I divided the porridge into four mason jars that I could heat up for my breakfast during the week. Worked really well and made me excited for breakfast! Hope you guys enjoy the recipe as much as I did!

in-the-mason-jars

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