Hello, my friends! We are in the midst of Spring here, and the weather is gorgeous. During the warmer seasons, I love working out first thing in the morning or taking long walks outside. It just makes me feel energized and ready to tackle the day. But I have to get up pretty early if I want to get a decent 30 to 40 minutes. I’ll admit that when it is cold outside, I don’t always succeed working out in the wee hours of the morning. But in Spring and Summer, the beautiful sun rays peek through the blinds and greet me in the morning. It is so much easier to silence that inside voice that just wants to snooze a little longer. After a great workout, I want a cold shower and a satisfying breakfast that is easy to make—there is not a lot of time before everyone needs to head out of the door. This plantain-egg breakfast with hemp seeds and sunflower kernels is not only healthy and delicious but also super easy to make.
Plantains—a member of the banana family—became more part of my diet when living in Miami. We always used to order traditional Latin American dishes at our favorite eatery that offer either sweet or savory cooked dishes with this fruit—more used as a vegetable in their cuisine. Plantains that are still green or green-yellowish on the outside are not sweet at all. They have a more starchy taste and are used to make savory dishes. When the fruits are quite ripe and have a brown or almost black color, they become more sweet in taste and softer in texture. Some plantains can already taste sweet with the skin still yellow and a few brown spots. But they will then also have the sweet aroma of a banana and feel very soft when placing some pressure on it with your thumb. I often buy the ripest plantains I can get at the store and then further ripen them by placing them in a large brown bag at room temperature. A fair warning, it can take a week or more before plantains are ripe and wonderfully sweet in taste. Lately, I have been adding some apples in the bag, and that seems to speed up the process.
For a quick breakfast, you can easily cook ripe and unpeeled plantains for a couple of minutes in the microwave. It depends on your microwave settings, but it takes anywhere from 2 to 3 minutes on a high setting until your plantain is soft and thoroughly cooked. By wrapping the fruit first in some wet paper towel, you make sure that the plantain does not dry out. I always make a deep lengthwise cross section cut to assist with the cooking process, and the shape of a boat makes it easier to dress it up with my favorite toppings.
You can add any of your favorite toppings like nuts, raisins, seeds, homemade granola, yogurt, etc. Personally, I love the extra protein and heartiness of a sunny side egg. Hemp seeds and sunflower kernels not only provide the right type of fats and extra protein after a workout, but I also love the nutty flavor in contrast to the hearty egg and sweet plantain. This breakfast is ready in 5 minutes and is satisfying.