I'm referring to the 6-Grain Breakfast recipe I tried this week. A few things drew me to the recipe: the aforementioned six grains (there are six grains in the world?!? wonder of wonders) and the potential health benefits of those, the cooking method (Crockpot overnight--wake up to hot breakfast!), and the inclusion of apples and cinnamon in the ingredient list. It sounded like a perfect food--tasty, easy and ridiculously nutritious.
Here's the recipe as I found it (somewhere online [I like to give credit where credit is due]):
6 Grain Breakfast
2 1/2 TBS bulgur wheat
2 1/2 TBS brown rice
2 TBS barley
2 TBS quinoa
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 cup diced apples
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 cups water
1 TBS vanilla extract
Combine ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. Stir before serving. Serves 4.
I like most hot cereals, so I thought I would like this. I'm not stupid though, so I tested it on my 10-year-old first. She is very good about trying new things and she likes oatmeal, so I thought she'd love the apple-y goodness of the 6 Grain Breakfast. After a few bites and five minutes of silence, she said, "Um...Momma? This isn't very good. I don't think I can finish it." I gave her permission to stop eating (the kid loves vegetables and would rather eat salad than candy, so I give her a break every now and then when she doesn't like something).
After she left for school, I tried some too (I added plenty of sweetener). I managed to eat the whole bowl, but I didn't enjoy the experience.
*Problems with the 6 Grain Breakfast:
1) For the life of me, I can't figure out what the 6th grain is. I only count five. I didn't notice this glaring problem until I typed the recipe just now. I wonder if the missing 6th grain would have made the cereal taste good?
2) Too apple-y. Maybe I shouldn't have used Granny Smith apples. Perhaps a sweeter apple variety would have tasted better. The apples overwhelmed the cereal, and not in a tasty apple pie way.
3) Too cinnamon-y. I like cinnamon, but there was too much in this recipe. Yet it still didn't counteract the apple. Rude.
4) Too vanilla-y. It's rare that I complain about a recipe having too much seasoning of any kind. I like seasoning. But this had too much vanilla. It tasted like a vanilla candle (mixed with an apple and cinnamon candle).
5) Needed salt. There was a blandness underlying the overly vanilled, cinnamoned and appled flavor. Salt fixes stuff like that.
6) Nobody washed the Crock Pot for me afterwards. I don't like washing Crock Pots.
I'm not giving up on the recipe. I liked the texture (mushy--but in a good way). I liked the grains! I liked having breakfast ready with no morning effort!
I think I'll try again next week, but leave out the apples, cinnamon and vanilla; change the name to 5 Grain Breakfast; add salt; add pumpkin puree; and add pumpkin pie spices. (Sara adds pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice to oatmeal--tres good). I hope salad-eating daughter is ready to be my guinea pig again.