Steel cut oatmeal is a staple breakfast item in my house, and I find even the leftovers a tasty snack later in the day. But cooked kasha leftovers (aka buckwheat groats), I had no experience with and wasn’t as thrilled about eating cold from the fridge, even with maple syrup. So I searched online, unsuccessfully, for a muffin or healthy cake recipe to utilize the extra cooked kasha I had sitting around after my family had their fill for breakfast.
Every recipe I came across called for buckwheat flour, which I also love, but with several extra cups of cooked kasha in my stove pot was of no use to me.
I figured adding the soft, cooked whole grain to a batter would yield more nutrition due to less processing, and would provide an interesting texture. Worth a shot, so I went about creating my own recipe. I’m happy to say it was a great success, and one I’ve already duplicated three times since creating it two weeks ago. There is very little maple syrup called for, but my daughter and I find it plenty sweet (my husband thinks it’s good too but even better with honey on top). It is deliciously moist and holds together well for breakfast on the go, which has become a huge priority since Ella began attending a twice a week preschool co-op. She’s used to taking a solid hour enjoying breakfast, and second breakfasts, and morning tea…it’s like feeding a hobbit…and I need to speed up the morning routine without taking the joy out of eating. Baking her a breakfast “cake” makes her feel like she’s waking up to a special treat, which she is…it just happens to be a healthy one.
Buckwheat groats are eaten regularly in western China and eastern Europe (I found a bag packaged in Poland in my local grocery store’s international section). Rich in complex carbohydrates, fiber, protein and magnesium, buckwheat is a very healthy alternative to wheat, and an excellent food for young babies due to an extremely low risk of allergic reaction.
–For gluten tolerant individuals you can use white whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour in place of the oat and sorghum (1 ¼ cup total), and omit the xanthan gum.
Buckwheat/Kasha Breakfast Cake with Carrots and Dates (gluten-free)
1 cup oat flour
¼ cup sorghum flour
1 t. xanthan gum
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 cup cooked buckwheat groats *See cooking instructions below
3 T. maple syrup
2 T. unsalted butter, melted + 1 t. to butter pan
1 cup milk, around room temperature
¼ cup chopped dates (I used pitted tunizian dates, but medjool dates would work well also), or substitute raisins
2 medium carrot, finely shredded
Preheat oven to 350°. Butter 8×8” pan with 1 t. butter.
Combine oat flour, sorghum flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt in medium bowl and whisk. Add cooked kasha, tossing in the flour mixture. Combine maple syrup, melted butter, milk and egg in large measuring glass or small bowl; add to dry ingredients and mix well. Stir in chopped dates and shredded carrots.
Pour cake into prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake 25-30 minutes, until cake is set and a toothpick tests clean. Allow to cool before slicing.
Makes 16 pieces
*Buckwheat/Kasha Cooking Instructions
1 T. butter
1 cup buckwheat groats (kasha)
2 cups water
½ t. sea salt
Bring water to a boil in a tea kettle or pan. Heat butter in a medium saucepan with lid. Add kasha and sauté until coated. Add boiling water and salt to kasha, cover, reduce heat to low and let simmer 20 minutes until buckwheat is tender.
Makes approximately 3 cups cooked kasha – plenty for a morning meal and creative baking. For morning porridge I like adding cinnamon, raisins or dried figs, flax, milk and a little maple syrup.