I didn’t grow up in a particularly crunchy household. Legend has it that my dad tried feeding me Oreos when I was three months old (guess that’s what happens when you give a 23-year-old dude a baby. Love you, Jay). The first thing I remember cooking for myself as a kid was one of those ramen blocks resembling Justin Timberlake’s hair from the ‘90s (sometimes I would get REAL gourmet and ditch the seasoning packets for butter and grated parmesan from the green plastic tub).
Now I’m not saying that my parents weren’t good cooks, or that they didn’t feed me veggies on the daily. But as two recent college grads trying to make a living in Atlanta, they had priorities other than making their own nut butters or raiding the bulk bins at the local co-op. My dad was working nonstop. My mom was in grad school studying her days away. Plus, they had a kid who would smear Vicks Vapo-Rub all over her body when left unsupervised (yep, I can confirm that it burns just as much as you would expect).
My childhood was more Lucky Charms than spelt puffs, but that doesn’t mean that my parents didn’t shape me into the raw granola–making person I am today. In fact, I trace most of my mother-of-the-earth #goals back to my mom’s musical tastes.
Betsy raised me on the Indigo Girls, as only a Birkenstock-clad Emory grad student in the ‘90s can. We listened to their music in the car, in the kitchen, and at what I can only assume were very intellectual political science parties. My mom even brought me along to one of their concerts as a baby.
In doing so, she laid the groundwork for a lifetime of singing along to the Indigo Girls’ songs and absorbing their folk-rock, stick-it-to-the-man lyrics. I mean, tell me you can listen to ‘Closer to Fine’ without feeling inspired to find yourself, start a revolution, and sprout some lentils. You can’t! It’s just that kind of music.
So you can imagine my excitement yesterday as I prepared to see the Indigo Girls in concert for the first time as an adult (I AM AN ADULT lol). I was cleaning the kitchen, attempting to harmonize to ‘Galileo’ when I realized that the only way to properly commemorate the occasion was to make a hippie-style breakfast bake. Thus, this peach and raspberry baked buckwheat was born.
I love buckwheat for its toothsome texture and nuttiness, and it takes this dish to the next level. Overall, it’s pretty similar to baked oatmeal, one of my all-time favorite breakfasts, except that it’s banana-free. Sometimes you just want a breakfast without bananas, ya know? I adapted the recipe from The First Mess, taking a summery approach with berries and stone fruit. The raspberries get jammy and tart in the oven, and the peaches become super sweet. Plus, it keeps well in the fridge, so you can make it ahead and have breakfast for the next few days.
Am I blaming my obsession with oatmeal, nutritional yeast, wearing bandannas, and all things stereotypically free-spirited on the Indigo Girls? Not entirely. I mean, four years of liberal arts college is bound to make you use chia seeds as an egg replacer. Still, I can’t think of a better way to pregame a crunchy concert than with a big bowl of baked buckwheat and almond milk. Except maybe Oreos (I’m blaming that one on my dad).
- 1 cup buckwheat groats
- 1 cup oats
- 1½ tsp. ground flax
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2½ cups milk, any kind (I used half coconut and half almond)
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 tsp. vanilla bean paste
- 1 cup almonds, toasted and roughly chopped
- 2 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen
- 1 peach, diced
- Preheat oven to 350° F / 175° C. Grease a 9-inch baking dish with coconut oil or butter and set aside.
- In a food processor or blender, pulse the buckwheat groats just until they are roughly broken up. You want to split them into smaller pieces without grinding them into flour, so be careful not to overprocess.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the processed buckwheat, oats, flax, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Stir until ingredients are evenly incorporated.
- In another bowl, whisk together the milk, honey, and vanilla bean paste.
- Scatter half of the buckwheat mixture in the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle half of the raspberries and almonds on top of the buckwheat, then drizzle half of the milk mixture over it. Repeat with the remaining buckwheat, raspberries, almonds, and milk. At this point, you can gently shake the dish so the ingredients settle, or poke the buckwheat with a spoon to let the milk seep into it. Scatter the peaches on top.
- Bake for 35-45 minutes, until the buckwheat has absorbed the milk and the top is golden brown. If the top browns too quickly, cover the dish with aluminum foil and continue baking. Serve with almond milk and honey, if desired.