Cooking for Wellness

Whole Grain Cooked Cereal with Dried Fruit Compote

May. 2, 2017

When it comes to hot cereals for breakfast, most people think of oatmeal. However, there are many other grains can be turned into comforting and delicious morning dishes by simmering them with any type of milk, adding spices such as cinnamon, and topping them with berries or other fruits. Grains that work well include millet, quinoa, couscous or buckwheat.

Today we will be using buckwheat, which is common in Asian and Eastern Europe cultures. Buckwheat groats are shaped like a pyramid, and roasted groats are known as kasha. Nutritionally, it provides protein, dietary fiber, zinc, copper, potassium and manganese. Despite its name, buckwheat is not related to wheat and it is naturally gluten free.

Buckwheat cerealYields:

  • 1 ½ cups cooked


  • ½ cup buckwheat groats, uncooked
  • 1 cup water or unsweetened almond milk
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/8 tsp salt


  1. Combine buckwheat groats, water (or milk), vanilla, cinnamon and salt in a saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil; cover reduce heat. Stir occasionally. Simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Serve warm.
  3. Optional: add dried fruit compote topping


Dried Fruit Compote Topping

Simmered dried fruit creates a versatile topping for hot cereals, pancakes or yogurt!


  • 4 servings


  • 1 cup pitted, dried fruit (such as prunes, figs, apricots)
  • ½ orange, washed and sliced into 1/4” thick slices
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup or honey
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 stick cinnamon


  1. Put all of the ingredients in a small sauce pan over medium high heat and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until all of the fruit is soft (about 20 minutes). Remove the cinnamon skin and orange rind (although the rind is edible, if you like).
  3. Serve over hot breakfast cereal.


Old World Taste

Laura Pole, Smith Center for Healing