Remedies have been a part of our culture for centuries, passed down from generation to generation. Our maternal abuelita, Mama Pina, had a wealth of knowledge about traditional remedies and sustainable practices that she used in day to day life in the pueblito she lived in.
She raised 9 kids and mothered many others, using natural remedies she learned her mom and other women in her community. One of our favorite childhood memories was when she would make avenita for breakfast on a cool morning. Her avenita is similar in texture to an atole de avena (i.e. a light, less thick oatmeal porridge) that can be served in a cup or bowl. Whenever someone gave birth in our family or community, she would make them her avenita to help the new mama recover.
Mama Pina taught us how important it is for moms to have proper nutrition while breastfeeding. We remember her calling out our tias for not eating enough caldito de pollo in the 40 days after birth. To our abuelita, it was essential that moms rested and recovered for 40 days after giving birth in order to ensure mom and baby thrived.
She would often talk about how oatmeal and warm milk could help with breast milk production. Oatmeal is a natural source of iron, protein, and fiber, which can help increase milk production and improve the quality of breast milk. Avena is also easy to digest and can provide a steady source of energy for a nursing mother.
When we both had our babies, we enjoyed her delicious avena, which gave us the nutrients our bodies needed to recover and filled our soul with our abuelita's love.
Eating Mama Pina's avena after giving birth is a rite of passage in our family. There was something so healing about enjoying her avenita recipe as part of our postpartum care. It made us feel connected to her, as she's no longer with us.
Our abuelita's traditional customs have been invaluable to us as we've become mamas, and they've inspired us to create VOLVERde, a marketplace that promotes sustainability and honors our ancestors. As we carry on the family tradition, you can make Mama Pina's delicious avena and start a new tradition in your family.
2 cup of rolled oats
4 cups of milk
3 cups of water
2-3 cinnamon sticks
1 tbsp of piloncillo (or to taste)
1/4 cup of sugar (or to taste)
- In a pot, bring the milk and cinnamon sticks to a boil on medium heat. Stir constantly as the milk starts to bubble.
- While the milk is heating up, take the rolled oats and water and blend in a blender. Blend for 5-10 seconds.
- Once the milk is simmering, pour in the blended oatmeal into the saucepan with the milk. Reduce to a low heat and stir constantly.
- Add sugar and piloncillo to taste.
- Let the mixture simmer on low heat until the oatmeal is thick and creamy, about 10-15 minutes.
- Once done, you can remove the cinnamon sticks (optional) and serve warm with your favorite peltre cup and a side of fresh bolillo bread. Our abuelita always paired the warm oatmeal with her favorite fresh bread.
- Don’t let the mixture in the blender sit too long because it will start to thicken. If the mixture becomes too thick you can add more water.
At VOLVERde, we believe that by honoring the wisdom of our ancestors and living sustainably, we create a brighter future for ourselves and our planeta. So let's raise a cup of avenita to Mama Pina and all the abuelitas out there who have taught us the power of taking care of our bodies and our planeta.