Friday, April 19, 2013

Overnight Oatmeal

I have wanted to make steel cut oatmeal for years.  Ever since I saw a recipe in an old Amish cookbook. But that one required an asbestos pot holder wrapped around a simmering pot all night long.  It seemed like too much trouble for me. that time asbestos was in the news a lot as a cancerous agent and finding an asbestos pot holder seemed dangerous to me.  So, I just never got around to it.

Then---fast forward  25 or so years.  This brings us to today, when I found a recipe for  Slow Cooker Oatmeal.  Wa-LAH!   My problem was solved.
Bring out the old slow cooker, and cook the oats all night WITHOUT asbestos.
The Handyman thought it weird to cook it all night,  since the steel cut oat package said in the directions that  30 minutes would do it.  But he was missing the fun of  starting it before bed time and waking up to it being done!

Here is a photo of the three different kinds of oatmeal  (yes, I do have all 3 in my house.  I like oatmeal, what can I say)

The top one is the steel cut oatmeal, the one on the right is  cooks in 1 minute oatmeal and the one on the bottom left is old-fashioned oats.

While it was fun to do the overnight steel-cut oatmeal,  my favorite is the Old-Fashioned Oats.  I think it's a texture thing  and what I'm used to.  I would do the  Steel-cut oats again tho.  They were good.
It would be fun for when I had company and  when we awoke the oatmeal would be done --with various toppings to add.
Like an oatmeal bar!

I found the recipe for Slow-cooker oats in a Better Homes and Gardens publication   HOMEMADE, 115 Recipes for Home-Cooked Comfort, winter 2013.

Slow Cooker Steel-Cut Oatmeal
6 cups water
2 cups steel-cut oats
1 tsp salt

Toppers: (pick what you like)
dried cherries
snipped apricots
chopped nuts
brown sugar
maple syrup 

In a 4 quart slow-cooker, combine the water, oats and salt. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for  5 1/2 to 6 hours or on high-setting for 3 to 3 1/2 hours.
Top each serving with desired toppers. Serve Warm.
Makes 9 servings.

** overnight oatmeal?  6 hours of sleep is not much, but I let it go longer than that, more like  7 hours of cooking time and it was fine.  OR I do get  up early every day, like 5:30ish. So that is plenty of time to cook the oatmeal for guests who eat around 8:30 or  9:00.
***for my favorite Old-Fashioned Oats, I like honey and half and half.

But these things would be fun for the Oatmeal bar.....

Blackberry-Walnut Oatmeal
Top each serving with toasted broken walnuts, graham cracker crumbs and fresh blackberries.

Chocolate-Almond Oatmeal
Stir about 1/2 cup pre-sweetened cocoa powder into cooked oatmeal.  Top with semi-sweet chocolate chips and toasted sliced almonds.

PB&J Oatmeal
Stir about 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter into cooked oatmeal. Top each serving with strawberry jam and granola.

Cinnamon-Raisin-Crunch Oatmeal
Toast and slice four slices cinnamon-raisin bread; cut into 1/2 inch cubes. Top each serving with brown sugar and toasted bread cubes.

Bacon-Berry Oatmeal
Slice fresh strawberries and sprinkle with sugar.  Top each serving  of oatmeal with strawberries and crumbled, crisp-cooked bacon.

Banana-Honey Oatmeal
Top each serving with sliced banana. Drizzle with honey.

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