It’s shortly after 10 a.m. on Sunday. We expected to arrive before the morning rush. However, by the near capacity of the dining room, it was evident that Newport Beach residents have craved another breakfast spot. After settling in at the bar, our server slides across a small clipboard and inquires about our beverage needs. Among the thoughtfully curated wine listings, we also notice turmeric shots, acai smoothies and matcha tea lattes. Yes, Malibu Farm knows its clientele.
We stick to our task at hand and recall what founder Helene Henderson remarked to us: “I love
our oatmeal, and I never get tired of it. It is the most simple thing ever: gluten-free oats and quinoa cooked in water and a pinch of salt, served with a drizzle of maple syrup and coconut milk with berries. Simply divine.” One protein-packed vegan breakfast coming up — January is, after all, National Oatmeal Month. We pass the time admiring the Scandinavian-chic, laid-back vibe of our surroundings.
Blending Bob’s Red Mill old-fashioned rolled oats with quinoa is a satiating combination. This iteration takes on a custard-like consistency, thanks to a slow simmering process and a
heavy-handed splash of milk. Biting into fresh, tart strawberries and blueberries creates tiny
bursts of flavor, while a maple syrup finish provides just enough sweetness to make it memorable, but not overpowering. Its all-natural yet understated taste fits well alongside the rest of the menu. It is exactly as Henderson described — healthy, but with a home-cooked feel to it.
Most diners may lean toward having a fried-egg sandwich or Swedish mini-pancakes for their
morning meal. But it takes a keen eye to see how much care Malibu Farm’s kitchen spends on a humble bowl of nourishment.
Makes 8 servings
This recipe does not have any eggs, so it is not “from the coop.” But it is a great protein-packed vegan breakfast dish. Gluten-free oats work well.
You can use any quinoa/oatmeal percentage combination; the recipe that follows is a 50/50 blend. The cereal will last several days in the fridge. Just reheat in the microwave, or stir in a small pan on the stove for a few minutes until heated.
- 1 cup well-rinsed quinoa
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats, gluten-free or regular
- 1 tsp. salt
- Coconut milk
- Maple syrup
- Fresh or dried berries
- Combine quinoa, oats and salt with 8 cups water, and simmer for 20 minutes or until the cereal is a soft, welcoming morning mash.
- Serve with coconut milk, maple syrup, fresh or dried berries, nuts or any combination you like.
Recipe reprinted from Malibu Farm Cookbook: Recipes from the California Coast. Copyright © 2014 by Helene Henderson. Photographs copyright © by 2014 Martin Löf. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.