Zen Surf Food is a new series from Wavelength bringing you vegan insights for surfers – and a better tomorrow. Fuel mind, body, soul… and a justified sense of superiority with cruelty free and ecocide light meal options for wave-riders with taste, curated by The Intolerant Yogi
Some say breakfast is the most important meal of the day; it’s certainly in the top three.
Others say that you can tell much about a nation by what it eats for brekkie.
In France, it’s gourmet butter pastries, culturally appropriated from Austria.
In Britain, it’s an abattoir-based delicacy known as the Full English. What does this tell us?
The French are fussy liars; the Brits greasy murderers?
Neither of the above have known associations with good surfing. Both are terrible for the planet, for animal welfare, and thus your general cosmic karma.
In the case of bacon, sausage, black pudding and all other processed meats, they are great for colorectal cancer. As in, great for improving your chances of getting it.*
Now the Swiss on the other hand, know a thing or two about the breaking of fast. While muesli might be their thing nowadays, back in the Bronze Age, its was oats, as evidenced by the oldest known cultivated oats (Avena sativa) being found in a cave there, dating back some 3000 years.
Oats have also made it into the popular vernacular as an expression for unrestrained, multiple partner virility, mainly in males, surely the only cereal to do so. But in 2020, it really does feel like we need to update this to fit everyone, however they gender identify.
“The French are fussy liars; the Brits greasy murderers?”
Just on the subject of muesli, while we’re here, I’ll take the opportunity to deter people from making their own muesli at home. I tried it once, it cost about £25 in ingredients, so that, no matter how it manifested on my tastebuds (it was ok), I would have had a bitter taste in my mouth, anyway.
One of my formative surf-porridge experiences came in the 90’s in South Devon. We got up an hour before dawn, mid-winter, ate porridge with banana and honey at a friend of a friend’s place, then all went for the dawnie at Bantham.
Icy NE offshore wind, frigid water, it was definitely a porridge kinda morning.
“Just like prepping for a dawnie, good porridge starts the night before…”
I dropped in on the guy who’d made the porridge, by mistake, on a soft 2ft-er in The Rip (the righthander by the rocks on the east end of the beach). He moaned about it afterwards at length, and I said sorry. But in retrospect, I should have punched his fins out after dropping in, rather than showing any remorse.
Serving me a bowl of rape puss (cow’s milk) before a shred? He deserved that fade. In recent years he’s taken to posting Britain First stuff on FB (cue unfollow). You could say it’s been a rapid downward spiral for him, while I’ve gone very much in the other direction.
Just like prepping for a dawnie, good porridge starts the night before. Get your oatmeal and a teaspoon of chia seeds and soak em in water (or oatmilk) overnight, to unlock the goodness.
Soaking removes the phytic acid, which basically makes all the good stuff more available to you. It also adds a creaminess. Win, win, then.
* In 2015 the World Health organisation listed processed meat as a type 1 carcinogen, alongside stuff like asbestos and tobacco. Yum!
Rather than go into the various ins and outs, I’ve abbreviated it down to simple world association.
Cow: Rape Puss
Soy: Man boobs
Almond: Aquifer depletion/mass pesticides
Rice/Spelt/Hemp: Never tried. Fools and their money, etc
Oat: Yes please
In the morning, throw in a handful of frozen berries before you warm up your soaked porridge.
These can either be store bought, or self-foraged. My mum collects several kilos of blackberries each autumn and freezes em, which just makes so much sense if you ask me. A few delicious hours beside the byways and green lanes of rural England, foraging nature’s antioxidant rich bounty, for free? Now we’re talking.
If you really want to show off, you can also hoy in a big dollop of peanut butter for some radical extra protein, and/or even a shake of raw cacao powder too.
About 18 months ago, I was in the London head office of the company I’d worked for for 15 years. It was about 8.55am and a colleague made me some porridge with peanut butter in the office kitchen… a first time for me.
I was still de-clagging it from my palette at 9am when we were all called into a meeting and told that the company was being being put into voluntary liquidation and we were all immediately unemployed. Hand over your laptops and keys, etc.
Rather than associate this taste combo with traumatic memories of pending financial ruin, I’ve actually gone the other way. I’ve looked at it as the start of a brilliant new chapter. It’s entered my life; I have it almost every day now.
To top things off, a quick spoon of ground flax seed (aka linseed) brings the nutrition home. It must be ground though. Whole flax seed is essentially pointless in terms of giving your rig vital goodness (omega-3 fats).
If you’re a true vegan, honey is out. Here’s why. If you want an alternative, try agave nectar, date or maple syrup instead. Or for real retro kick, muscovado sugar (molasses).
Whether you go microwave or stove top depends on how many bowls you’re making. A communal lot is better on the stove, although it will catch, so keep stirring.
If you live alone, it’s probably microwave for you, the go-to appliance of the un-loved.
I’d probably recommend either waiting till after shred before eating this big heavy bowl of plant based, cruelty free, suitable for rastas goodness, or eating at least 45 mins to an hour before paddling out.
300g oats (soaked overnight)
A spoon of chia
Frozen berries (or fresh!)
Dollop of peanut butter
A Spoon of ground flax seed
oat milk / water
Next up: That time I blew two WSL judges minds with homemade vegan samosas so good they tearfully spat their tapas grease out the car window at 140km/h on a Spanish motorway.