07 February 2012

toasted multigrain cereal

I have finally figured it out.

Okay, that was dramatic.


So was that pause.

Here's the thing: I always want to like eating oatmeal for breakfast. The trouble is, my first-ever experience was probably getting some of those just-add-hot-water packets (sugar high, WHEE!!!!) of it at girl scout camp or something. I was pretty okay with those. I probably ate them for dinner every once in a while in college. I probably added peanut butter to them too. :) Once again, I've decided I should eat oatmeal. (Our household's yogurt consumption rate is unsustainable. Sustain! Sustain! Sustain!) I tried cooking it over the stove and adding yogurt instead of milk -- not too bad. I think my problem is that I've always wanted oatmeal to taste like a cookie, and that is not going to happen. I want to eat grown-up oatmeal. But you know what makes it taste like a cookie? Nope, not the brown sugar and butter... it's the vanilla! Just a tiny drop makes it perfect. Ah, success! Now I feel extra motivated to make my own vanilla extract.

And then, this bomb dropped into my RSS reader a week or so ago: Heidi knew of my strife.

I've been making this for breakfast ever since. Okay, except for that one day we made pancakes. But I put all the grains in our pancakes, so it was like I turned my hot cereal into pancakes. I kid you not.

The recipe posted on 101 Cookbooks serves 2-3, so here's my iteration for a single serving, plus a list of what's already become my favorite set of adornments:

  • Combine rolled oats, rolled rye, and rolled barley in a 1:1:1 ratio in a bowl. Stir to combine, and store in a jar/empty yogurt container/put a lid on your bowl. I put a 1/2 cup of each into a 2 c. mason jar and shake it around until it looks homogenous to me. Yeah, you know I just used the word homogenous! You liked it! 

  • The night before, melt a sliver of butter (~1/4 T) in a small saucepan. Toss 1/3 c. of the cereal in the butter, stirring continuously, until it smells all toasty, over low heat. I don't think this even takes five minutes. Add one cup plus one tablespoon of water and a dash of salt, and put the lid on. This will hang out at room temperature while you go get your beauty sleep.

  • In the morning, bring this mix up to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes, until most of the moisture is gone. Stir occasionally if it makes you feel better about things. Don't go too far or it'll be all dry and stuck to the bottom of the pan. When it's ready, scoop it into a bowl and **immediately** refill the pot with soapy water. The residue needs a good soak so that you can clean up the pan more easily. 

Now for decorations! Yay!

  • 1 T. plain yogurt
  • 2 t. toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1-2 t. good honey
  • 1-2 t. bourbon blueberries, drained (soak dried blueberries in a small jar with bourbon and a splash of vanilla in the fridge) (on the weekends I wouldn't worry so much with the draining... whatever floats your boat, mmkay?) 

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