Some people love pumpkin. Me!
Some people think pumpkin is cow food!!
I was staying with a friend recently and I said I would make breakfast. I don’t eat standard Westernised breakfasts that often. I follow a gluten free vegetarian diet. Many breakfast cereals I can’t eat so I make breakfast from other grains – such as quinoa – one of my favourite.
Quinoa is earthy and tastes like warm sunshine. Mixed with roast pumpkin, chopped dates and a little maple syrup to me it the perfect breakfast.
My friend, whom I didn’t know so well at that moment, didn’t tell me he was in the “Pumpkin is for cows” category. He was very polite and dropped hints the night before about his persuasion – which I completely missed as I find it hard to believe anyone doesn’t adore pumpkin.
Bravely he watched me make breakfast – for 2:
1/2 cup of quinoa + just under 1 cup water in a pot.
Bring to boil with lid on and then simmer until the quinoa is nearly absorbed.
Then add to the pot small roast pumpkin pieces (1cm cubes) (I had made roast vegetables with chickpeas the night before but made extra pumpkin for breakfast!! Two pumpkin meals in 12 hours!!) – as much or as little as desired – say a small handful to start with.
Add about 3 chopped fresh dates – they are very sweet so more for more natural sweetness. (Alternatively you can add sultans)
Leave on heat until the pumpkin and dates are heated and the quinoa is not crunchy.
Serve with a little maple syrup – depending on your sweet tooth.
After watching me cook cow food for breakfast, my friend then politely ate the cow food.
To his surprise he found it almost agreeable!! Hard to like something on first attempt when you “knew” you weren’t going to like it!!
Try it – you might love it too!!
It’s amazing how we limit our culinary experiences by preconceived ideas! That’s one great thing about travelling. Sometimes you don’t have a choice – eat what is put in front of you or fast!! This way, just like my friend’s politeness, we get to try new foods and expose our taste buds to new gastronomic delights.
Being vegetarian, sometimes I feel I miss a little of the local cultural experience as meat is such a large portion of most cultures’ cuisines. But, I’m content to go without. As Gandhi said: Live simply so others may simply live. I am happy to let cows live!!
Enjoy your quinoa AND pumpkin!! And thanks to my friend for being so polite!