Soaked whole wheat and farro lemon chia poppy seed waffles

These waffles are amazing! [If I can say so myself?]waffles

Don’t let the long name frighten you. The recipe is E-ZEE!

This brunch superstar has the lightness of any of the best Belgian waffles out there but with far superior nutrition and, again, they’re way easy! No letting the yeast work and rise, no separating egg yolks from whites, no whisking said egg whites, none of that nonsense. The hardest thing is to find two key ingredients: farro and chia seed. Usually you’ll find them pretty close to one another in the “unique grains” isle of your supermarket. You have one of those isles, right? These two are becoming ever more of a staple, so you should be able to find them readily. I hope they become a staple for you too if you happen to get your hands on them.

So chia, chia is high in high-quality protein, fiber and antioxidants. It’s just an all-around super-good seed and useful in many ways like cookies or more cookies or even in something like strawberry cranberry chia jam. But in this recipe the chia will sort of mimic and enhance the poppy seed. I mean, do poppy seeds actually taste like anything? Okay, they may not taste like anything but they too are good for you, high in B-vitamins and minerals. Lucky for us, this waffle is amazing. I already said that. Anyhoo, I really don’t think chia tastes like anything either but it’s that sweet little speckling of seeds, the speckled-lemon flavor, plus the good, healthy nutrition they bring that make the waffles special. As for farro, if you are unfamiliar with farro, it’s a form of wheat derived from three different varieties: spelt [you’ve probably heard of that?], emmer [never heard of that myself, but I understand it’s far and away the most common wheat grain grown in Italy, huh?] and einkorn [I’ve only heard of this just recently because I have a friend who’s just really cool and is familiar with stuff like weird grains]. Farro is typically cooked until soft but with a slight crunch. Here we will soak it with the rest of the whole wheat and just cook it in the waffle maker, so it will perfectly fit that description of soft but with a twinge of crunch.

Next, let’s talk soaking. Here’s the deal with soaking grains — and if you get nothing other than the soaking part from this waffle recipe, then I will have succeeded in sharing something truly noteworthy.

spring2010-phyticacidThis is a phytic acid molecule with a phosphorous atom on each arm. Huh. Isn’t she lovely? Really, it means nothing to me. I’m no chemist. But what I understand is that this molecule is present in most of the tastiest foods that we eat on a regular basis: breads, cereals, anything bready, nuts, anything nut-buttery, beans, and basically anything that is a seed, nut or grain. The problem with phytic acid is it makes the food really hard for us to digest. Phytic acid is often called an “anti-nutrient” and is one reason that many have “gone Paleo” meaning they’ve taken all grains, beans and such out of their diet. I can totally commiserate with the Paleo movement people because I, too, feel better when I eat Paleo-esque. How I understand it, Phytic acid robs our body of calcium, magnesium and other minerals because it kind of goes through the body and prevents those things from being absorbed. Phytic acid makes digestion more difficult and makes it so that we don’t get the full benefit out of the good, healthy foods we eat.

Good thing for soaking.

Soaking grains, beans, nuts and seeds neutralizes a lot of that phytic acid and makes room for the body to asimilate those nutrients which are otherwise locked-up inside that little protective cover. Most soaking happens at room temp and lasts for approximately 12 hours (some foods less / some more). You soak the grain or seed in water or milk and with something that gives a slight acidity such as vinegar or lemon juice.

All of that said, here’s the simple recipe for:

Whole wheat and farro lemon chia poppy seed waffles

The night before you would like to make your waffles, take a large bowl and mix together these ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 c. whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 c. farro
  • 1/4 c. chia seeds
  • 2 T. poppy seeds
  • zest of one lemon
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 c. milk of choice or even water

Stir until combined. Cover. Allow to soak overnight at room temperature. No, the milk will not spoil. Trust me.

In the morning get your waffle iron hot because this batter is going to be ready to heat up in no time. Add:

  • 3 eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 T. honey
  • 3/4 t. salt
  • 1/4 c. butter or coconut oil melted (but not hot)
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. baking soda

Cook in your waffle iron as you would normally. Hint: I have a non-stick iron, but I still brush it with a smidgen of  coconut oil between each waffle. It just makes life simpler.

Top with a little more honey (enzymes in raw honey actually help to break down whole wheat too, so drizzle away).

Or use pure maple syrup with a little more lemon juice whisked into it.

Or make up a juicy lemon-blueberry sauce or some-such.

Or just go to town without any of that and eat-em plain.20150518-071726-26246614.jpg

Complete approval.

20150518-071724-26244291.jpg

Enjoy the waffles.

Play around with soaking stuff.

Your guts will thank you.

Peace.

~Susie

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