I remember as a kid, that occasionally on Sunday nights we would have a ‘special’ dinner. We called it Hot Porridge and we all loved it. Now that I am an adult I look back and realize that it was just cooked wheat berries! We would drizzle a little honey and a splash of milk on it and eat it up. I haven’t eaten it in years and the other day I saw a picture of cooked wheat berries and the memories of hot porridge came flooding back and I got a hankering to make it. If you have never tried it, then you might be a little startled by the texture – it is very chewy! But that is honestly one of my favorites parts about it – the texture. There really isn’t another food quite like it.
You might be wondering what a wheat berry even is?? Wheat berries are whole, unprocessed wheat kernels that contain all three parts of the grain, including the germ, bran and starchy endosperm. Only the hull, the inedible outer layer of the grain, has been removed. As a result, wheat berries retain all of the grain’s vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals.
Whole grains have a lot of health benefits. Studies continue to show that consuming whole grains can help lower the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer. Research has also shown that eating whole grains vs. refined can help with weight control. One study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition followed the eating habits of over 70,000 women and found that those who consumed the most whole grains consistently weighed less than those who ate the least.
And if feeling incredibly healthy isn’t enough to knock your socks off when you eat this breakfast, then the honey infused yogurt and tangy dried apricots may just do the trick.
To begin, fill a pot with wheat berries and water. You will want a 3:1 ratio. I used 1 cup of wheat berries and 3 cups of water. Get it boiling and then turn it to low so that it is simmering and cover.
Cook for about 40-60 minutes until the kernels are plump and some have begun to split. The only real way to tell if they are done is to try them.
Next you will whisk your honey and yogurt together. Then top your wheat berries will all sorts of goodness. I love dried apricots and so I used those, dried cranberries, and almonds. It was delicious. In the summer this would be so good with fresh berries.
This breakfast is very filling – I ate this for breakfast the other day and wasn’t hungry at all until lunch. Plus I have so much wheat in my food storage, it is a great way to use up some of it without grinding it for bread. This is a breakfast that you can eat often, but not get sick of because you can change the toppings. Try different nuts and fruit. Try it without yogurt, and with milk. You can also cook the wheat berries ahead of time, store them in your fridge and just reheat when you are ready to eat them.