Peaches are at their peak right now and hallelujah, the price has just come right down. In BC the Okanagan is famed for its fruit trees and whilst I've yet to make a visit, I can at least share its bounty down the road here in Vancouver. When they are nicely ripe and juicy, peaches make a wonderful feast and it so happens when you pair them with ginger, the outcome is a pretty darn delicious one.
So we all know about the benefits of ginger, right? Well, don't overlook peaches because they're packed with vitamins and antioxidants, they also supply potassium, iron and so much good stuff you may like to think again about buying unprescribed over the counter supplements and go buy some peaches instead*. Apparently they are a good choice in helping kill off breast cancer cells, will help remove worms from the intestines and reduce anxiety so add another one to your brown paper bag. The Chinese use the peach as a kidney cleanser and detoxifier, so why don't you go grab one more while you're at it. Then because this fruit can reduce heartburn, inflammation, hair loss, calm an upset stomach and control the body's ageing process .. well surely that bag must be full by now! Having said that, go easy on quantities and remember too much sugar, even in fruit, can slow your healing process down.
Last month I had three weeks back in England with my daughter visiting family and friends, which was both fantastic and so long overdue. We spent time catching up with best buddies in London, a week in Cornwall with my folks and then the final few days in Dorset on the south coast, where we pottered about on the beach and fished for minnows in the river. But as much as I enjoyed the break, eating an AIP diet was really hard, we were constantly on the edge of hunger and by the end of it I was craving my oatmeal so badly. That and liver 😉
Did you know I'm on Pinterest? What a fantastic resource ... for anything actually but it has to be the go-to place to search out recipes for the AIP Protocol. Today's recipe is adapted from one I found via Pinterest which, incidentally, is utterly delicious - only I wanted something more suited to the warmer months and their abundance of Summer fruits.
Using squash as a substitute for oatmeal is genius, believe me you would never in a month of Sundays guess the mystery ingredient. And don't forget, a bowl of this is so much better for your brain than a bowl of gruelly grain could ever be. This, my friends, is how I love to eat. To me, this is perfection!
Prepare a large squash the night before by cutting it in half across the width, scooping out the seeds and putting it cut side down in a roasting pan large enough to hold both halves. Pour a half inch worth of water into the pan and bake at 350F/180C for about 45 minutes to an hour. You want the flesh to be nice and soft, beyond that spaghetti stage so if you go over the 45 minute mark, like I did the other day when I forgot it for nearly an hour and a half, I wouldn't worry! Carefully remove the piping hot squash halves and put them onto plates to cool before popping into the fridge overnight. Next morning, making this is the easiest thing ever and takes just minutes!
* Please note I am not suggesting you do not take supplements in favour of peaches, I do however want to stress the importance of taking them only on the advice of a qualified nutritional therapist, and not self-prescribing from the pharmacy shelves.
peach and ginger oatmeal
Even though this recipe uses half a large squash, I still cook this size as the squash keeps well in a covered container in the fridge. That way you'll have enough for another oatmeal breakfast, or a good quantity you can use for something else.
3 cups (750g) spaghetti squash
1+1/4 cups (110g) shredded coconut (I use this one)
2 cups (500ml) coconut milk (I use this one)
3 large ripe peaches, washed, stones removed and roughly chopped (but skins left on)
1 tsp powdered ginger (I use this one)
1 tsp salt (I use this one)
Put all the ingredients into a large pan, mix well and bring to the boil. Immediately turn down to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently until piping hot and the peaches have softened, approx 6-8 minutes. Resist the temptation to add more coconut milk if your mix looks rather dry at the start. Peaches give out a surprising amount of liquid as they cook so add that extra milk right at the very end, after blending, if needs be.
Use an immersion blender to break down the fibres of the squash, but leaving it fairly chunky. Serve the oatmeal with grilled peaches, toasted shredded coconut, however.
When you make 'oatmeals' be sure to add some collagen on serving (which mixes in beautifully by the way) for your joint health. It's wondrous stuff!
Edit : Check out this post for an Autumn/Winter oatmeal recipe you won't want to miss! Plus for more breakfast inspiration, you may want to think about getting a copy of the e-book "85 Amazing AIP Breakfasts"!