I usually don’t eat much rice, since the environmental impacts of rice are almost as bad as those of meat. Luckily there are many delicious substitutes for rice available. One that I use quite a lot is whole oat kernels. At least in Finland they are locally grown and can be obtained in organic stores. The thing with oat is that it becomes porridge very easy, so it is important to start cooking them in cold water, and preferably use too little water in the beginning, instead of too much. I usually start cooking them with about 50% more water than oats, and then add water little by little when the oats have absorbed it.
This time I decided to try to make some kind of a risotto out of them.
Lemon Risotto with Whole Oats (2 portions)
2 dl whole oats
3 dl water to start with
1 tsp salt
Half a lemon’s grated zest
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 dl oat cream
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 dl cashew nuts
I added the oats and cold water into a cooking pot, and let it boil until the water was absorbed. Then I added 1 dl of water and let the oats simmer on low heat until they were done. This took about 30 minutes, but it is a good idea to keep an eye on the oats, because the time might vary a bit, as well as the amount of water. Also they should remain a little bit chewy, since it is so easy to overcook them. When the rest of the water had absorbed, I added the oat cream, olive oil, and lemon juice, and let the pan stay on the cooking stove on low heat still for a while. Then I added the rest of the spices. The cashw nuts I roasted lightly on a pan and sprinkled on top.
There is sometimes a slight bitterness in the taste of whole oats. I think combining them with lemon was a good idea, because the tang of the lemon covers this bitterness. Also cashew nuts were nice in this dish, since their sweetness complemented the sourness of the lemon very well.