ooo, oats

by Chen

A project was launched this Monday: oats for breakfast from Monday to Friday. Partially for testing. Partially for fun. Partially for cleaning up the pantry.

Talking oatmeal, I thought it was “food for birds” years ago until I gradually learned the beauty of it. Besides healthy eating, its earthy aroma, natural sweetness, and comforting creaminess makes the breakfast the most pleasing meal.

Oats are the most common yet versatile pantry stable. Everyday oatmeal, cookies, fruit crisps, granola…you name it, and my auntie even enjoys savory oatmeal with sauteed shredded cabbage quite often. To me, they are something I can never get tired of. I don’t have to eat them everyday, but once in a while, I crave for oatmeal.

Back to my breakfast project, I tried two types of oatmeal “base”: hot oatmeal base and chilled muesli base. Oatmeal could hardly live by its own, so one of my purposes was to test the possible add-on. Though the combinations were largely limited by what I had on hand, I got some awesome inspirations.

hot oatmeal base
Makes 1 serving

1/2 scant cup rolled oats
1/2 cup whatever milk
1/4 cup water (1/2 cup for thinner oatmeal)

Put everything in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 5 minutes or to desired consistency. If you prefer thick/creamy oatmeal, cover and let the mixture rest for another 5 minutes after the heat is off.

chilled muesli base
Makes 1 serving

1/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup plain yogurt, kefir, or buttermilk (well, anything “sour”)

Mix oats and soaking liquid together in a bowl until well combined. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

And here comes the fun part:

Things that might be always stirred in:
* vanilla
* sweetener (my all-time sweetener is honey)
* spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, etc

Additional toppings I tried this week:
Monday: blueberry and dark chocolate
Tuesday: banana and peanut butter
Wednesday: blueberry and flax seeds
Thursday: peanut butter and jam
Friday: dried cranberry and pistachio