Oatmeal Cravings

apple oatmealI’m not a huge oatmeal eater.

But every so often – like maybe once a year – I decide that for some reason oatmeal sounds really good.

I’m not sure why I think this since the last time I had a bowl of oatmeal that I actually enjoyed was …

Hmmm….

Let me see…

Still thinking here….

Hmmm…

Okay…that would be never.

But still – the urge hit last week.

I wanted a bowl of steaming hot oatmeal for breakfast.

I got the water boiling, added my oatmeal and decided in my foggy just barely awake mind that an apple would taste yummy in this bowl of delicious healthy food.

So I went to the porch to choose an apple – the perfect apple – from the box of “just picked from our very own trees” apples.

By the time I returned to the stove with my perfect apple washed and diced – my oatmeal was scorched on the bottom of the pan.

This should have been my first warning. But did I heed this warning? No. I started a second pot of water, added my oatmeal and apple, and began to scrounge in the cupboard for the cinnamon, because everyone knows that oatmeal with apples needs cinnamon.

I tear the cupboard apart looking – while stirring my oatmeal every few minutes – until I find the jar.

The almost empty jar.

The “there is just a dusting of cinnamon in the bottom” jar.

I pour all 1/120th of a teaspoon of cinnamon into my oatmeal.

This is sad.

Then I remember that we have cinnamon sticks. In my sleep deprived mind I thought surely I could just grate a cinnamon stick on a micro plane and have fresh cinnamon.

Brilliant!

Or not.

After grating for several minutes (while stirring my now done oatmeal) all I had was a few flecks of cinnamon in my oatmeal and two fingers missing skin.

On to plan C.

What if I break off a piece of cinnamon stick and grind it the coffee grinder?!

Brilliant!

Or not.

After several seconds all I had done was break the stick into lots of little sticks.

But I added them to my now overdone mushy oatmeal anyway – figuring they would eventually soften and dissolve. Right?

Wrong.

These are called cinnamon sticks for a reason. They are sticks. Sticks don’t grate. Sticks don’t grind. Sticks don’t dissolve.

Sticks stay sticks and I was picking them out of my teeth for the rest of the day.

So much for this year’s oatmeal craving.

I should be good for another 12 months.

Oatmeal Brown Sugar Rolls

BreadPreparations for Thanksgiving are in full swing here!

Although I’m not hosting – we have 2 different family meals to fit in this weekend.

We’ll be bringing yeast rolls and homemade jam to both.  Angel Girl has the first of 4 batches started now.

While they’re rising – I’ll share this family favorite – a light and fluffy dinner roll made with oatmeal and brown sugar. The oatmeal adds a whole grain without using whole wheat flour. Even people who are skittish about whole wheat rolls will eat these!

The recipe came from my oldest sister – who happens to have excellent taste. 😉

Oatmeal Brown Sugar Rolls

2 cups boiling water
1 cup rolled oats (I’ve used both old-fashioned and quick cooking)
3 tablespoon oil
1 tablespoon yeast
1/3 cup lukewarm water
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
5-5-1/2 cups flour

Pour boiling water over oatmeal. Cool to lukewarm.

Soften yeast in lukewarm water.

Combine the oatmeal, oil, brown sugar, and salt. Add flour to make a soft dough.

Knead 7-8 minutes.

Put in a greased bow, cover with plastic wrap and let rise until double. Punch dough. Let rise again.

Shape into rolls and place on a greased baking sheet. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise till doubled.

Bake about 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

Makes 3-4 dozen.

Enjoy!

I’ve linked this post up with Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.

Blackberry Streusel Coffee Cake

breakfastIt’s back to reality around here this week.

The kids are all home again – the washing machine has been going non-stop and there are muddy shoes all over the porch.  🙂

That also means it’s  back to cooking in large batches since those teens are bottomless pits who can empty a fridge in 36 hours or less!

But after my little “vacation” I should be full of creative thoughts – right?!

Well – this little breakfast experiment worked. I think you could even say it was a huge hit!

I combined 2 different recipes and threw in some frozen blackberries to make it fun.

If only all my experiments tasted this good! 🙂

Blackberry Streusel Coffee Cake

1-1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
6 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cup oatmeal
4-1/2 tablespoons oil
2 eggs, beaten
1-1/2 cup milk

Blackberry Filling

1 quart frozen blackberries
1-1/2 cup sugar (or less – to taste)
4 tablespoons corn starch

Streusel Topping

1/2 cup sugar
6 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons butter

Put the blackberries, sugar and corn starch into a saucepan and heat until thickened. Set aside.

Then make the streusel topping by combining the sugar & flour. Cut in the butter to make crumbs. Set aside.

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and oatmeal. In a separate bowl combine the oil, eggs, and milk. Add milk mixture to oatmeal mixture until just moistened.

Spread into a greased 9 x 13 pan.

Top with the blackberry mixture and streusel crumbs.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Enjoy!

Granola & Granola Bites

There’s two recipes in one blog post today. But since you can’t make one without the other – you get a two-fer day!

Watching my teenagers down an entire box of cold cereal in 2 days, caused me to re-evaluate breakfast.

We needed something that would be more filling – and more cost effective. It was time to dig out the granola recipes.

This one has become our new favorite. It’s perfect with some yogurt and sliced fruit.  It does makes a bunch, but around here it goes fast!

GranolaGranola

10 cups oatmeal (I like to use the old-fashioned)
2 cups barley flakes (can just use more oatmeal)
2 cups coconut
2 cups peanuts
2 cups slivered almonds
2 cups sunflower seeds
3/4 cup oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cup peanut butter
1-1/2 cup brown sugar or honey

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl. Mix wet ingredients in a saucepan and cook until dissolved.

Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and mix until everything is moistened.

Pour out on 2 large baking pans. Bake at 275 degrees until golden brown, about 20 minutes, stirring twice.

Now that you have your granola made – it’s time to take some of it and make our new favorite snack – granola bites.

I got the original recipe from my friend Jami at An Oregon Cottage.  These little gems are not only packed with protein and whole grains – they taste great! They make the perfect snack for a teenager who can’t make it to the next meal!

Granola BitesGranola Bites

1 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2 cup granola
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Mix the peanut butter, honey, and vanilla in a bowl. Add the granola and chocolate chips.

Refrigerate for 3o minutes before shaping into balls with a cookie scoop and rolling in more granola, chopped peanuts or coconut. (This helps take away some of the stickiness)

Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

You can experiment with different nut butters and add dried fruit or different chips.

Enjoy!

Cinnamon Apple Coffee Cake

I don’t often follow recipes.

I may start out with good intentions – but quickly begin second guessing the recipe or  making substitutions.

I’ve creating some really amazing flops that way.

But I’ve also manged to pull off some pretty yummy dishes.

This is one of the yummy ones! Years ago I started playing with an oatmeal muffin recipe and in one of my creative moods – it morphed into a coffee cake.

Later I added the apples and – in a moment of brilliance – actually remembered to write down what I had down!

It’s remained a family favorite every since!

Cinnamon Apple Coffee Cake

1-1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
6 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cup oatmeal
4-1/2 tablespoon oil
2 eggs
1-1/2 cup milk
1 can apple pie filling

Crumb Topping:

2 tablespoons melted butter
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3 tablespoons flour

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the oatmeal. Set aside.

In a separate bowl mix together the oil, eggs, and milk. Stir into the oatmeal mixture until just moistened.

Pour the mixture into a greased 9 x 13 pan.Carefully spread with the apple pie filling.

Mix together the sugar, flour, cinnamon and melted butter to make a crumb topping. Sprinkle over the apples.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Enjoy!