For years, a crisp, cold glass of lassi laced with bits of cardamom and as thin a consistency as water was the first thing we had in the morning before leaving for school. I did not remain much of a lassi person since then but that lightly sweet,frothy yogurt done with a hand churner was definitely a special childhood thing.
On few days we would have dalia (wheat groats) with warm milk, really mushy and mostly resembling nursery foods but still comforting from the scent of whole cardamom pods which the groats were boiled with. The selection of cereals now available in the stores was not how things were then and I feel that it was better, you could admire and enjoy wholesome foods. Slowly,I moved on to a quick bowl of cornflakes drizzled with honey before leaving for work or for a change a spiced almond paste mixed with cold milk. Somehow,cereals always remained an essential part of my breakfast. There is something comforting about (hot or cold) cereals in the mornings. A night before, I try to prepare steel cut oats,buckwheat/millet groats for next morning. It gets so easy to start the day with right kind of grains.That wholesome protein and carb boost at the start of day is what I always try to go with. The other day,I was chatting with mom about choices of wholesome breakfast for my daughter and she mentioned this quick & easy choora (flattened rice) with dahi (yogurt) as an option. It seemed very doable and knowing little A’s love for them, I made a big bowl with mashed mango for her. I could barely describe the mess she created with mangoes but looks like it hit the right spot with her. Even I loved it a LOT.
Beaten or flattened rice (poha) which is very popular in India for making trail mixes,lightly tempered pilafs for breakfasts and for desserts too.Even though it is more popular in central and western parts of the country but now everybody is catching up to this healthy option. This recipe comes from the state of Bihar where they start the day with a big bowl of this. I should not call it a recipe but since we are enjoying it so much for cold breakfast and occasional snacking, it needs to make an appearance here. There is barely any recipe since you put together your bowl with as much of whatever you want,the only catch is using the right kind of flattened rice since there is no cooking involved. There are quite a few varieties available in the stores and online just buy the thinnest one you can get. Sprinkle your yogurt bowl with any kind of fruits, nuts or toppings you like and sweeten with just about anything. I like mashed or cut up mango with cardamom, topped with chia seeds and some roasted seeds and dried fruits. Hope you enjoy this naturally gluten-free, fuss free and most of all a no cook breakfast which has the right amount of carbohydrates and proteins for you!! What’s more – mom says its cools the stomach, particularly during summer months.
1.5 cup plain greek yogurt,cold (you could use flavored ones too)
1/4 tsp cardamom powder (or use vanilla)
1/2 cup poha (thin variety flattened rice)
1-2 tbsp coconut sugar (or any sweetener of choice to taste)
Nuts, Seeds, dried fruits etc of choice
Peel the mango and puree it in a food processor. Or you can chop it.Set aside.
Mix the greek yogurt with cardamom powder.Set aside.
Place the flattened rice in your colander and sprinkle water over it till it is just about moistened. Don’t use to much of water else the poha will get soggy & lumpy. Set aside for 3-4 minutes. Fluff up and loosen grains gently with fork.
In a bowl, place half of the yogurt and put the soaked flattened rice over it.Sprinkle with coconut sugar (or whatever sweetener you are using). Top it with rest of the yogurt, mango puree and seeds/nuts of choice.
Alternatively, you could layer the yogurt and chivda in a mason jar/tumbler. Serve cold immediately.
Just play around with the quantities of yogurt & poha to get the consistency you like.
Use thick coconut milk or dairy free yogurt for a vegan version of this recipe.
Do not stir the yogurt too much once you have added the flattened rice.
Adjust the quantity of yogurt if you feel that the poha is on a dry side once you put the bowl together.