I know it has been a while since my last post, though I hope you can forgive me. The process of starting a new job and getting settled in a new home is quite the undertaking! I am hoping that in the coming months I can get back to more regular blogging.
As we ease into the last few weeks of October, the weather is finally starting to feel like fall here in Kansas. While many gravitate to all things pumpkin spice latte when there is a hint of cool air, I think of apple cider. I love the smell and taste of the rich juice. Since cider is so sweet already, it makes a simple breakfast of Cider Steel Cut Oats really easy.
I have added allspice to my cider and oats, but that is it. A few minutes on the stove is all it takes to create the creamy breakfast cereal. I have garnished mine with golden raisins, dried cranberries, and pistachios, though I can see a variety of toppings being just as good. A bit of candied pecans and crème fraiche perhaps? I do love to experiment with different mix-ins for oats, as you may recall from my posts Oatmeal with Goat Cheese & Dates and Lemon and Blueberry Oatmeal. What topping do you think I should try the next time I make Cider Steel Cut Oats?
Golden raisins, dried cranberries, and pistachios for garnish
Place the apple cider, oats, and allspice in a medium sized pan. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat and simmer for about 7 minutes or until the oats are tender but still chewy, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let sit 2 minutes, then plate and garnish with raisins and nuts. Serve.
If given a choice, my children would eat peanut butter every day for breakfast. On top of the great taste, they enjoy getting to make breakfast on their own (if you can really call smothering a piece of bread with peanut butter cooking). Needless to say, we dissuade them with other, more filling choices.
This week I wanted to make something that was just as easy to serve, yet kept them begging to eat. I made Loaded Peanut Butter Granola Bars. In addition to the peanut butter, the bars are filled with steel cut oats, puffed corn cereal, nuts, dates, and chia seeds. The kids LOVED them, and I am thrilled they get fiber, protein, and omega-3s. A family win!
Loaded Peanut Butter Granola Bars
3 cups steel cut oats
2 cups puffed corn cereal
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup pepitas
¼ cup chia seeds
¾ cup crunchy peanut butter
½ cup honey
3 tablespoons coconut oil
In a large bowl, mix together the oats, cereal, dates, pepitas, and chia seeds. In a small sauce pan, combine the peanut butter, honey, and oil. Heat over medium heat until melted. Pour over the oat mixture and stir to coat. Cover the bottom and sides of a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with foil and cover with cooking spray, then spread in the granola mixture and press firmly. Cover with a sheet of waxed paper and cover with another baking pan and weigh down. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours than cut into bars.
Note: I used the recipe for Chocolate Monkey Bars from BH&G as a starting point for the peanut butter binder and wet to dry ratio. The possibility of mix-ins are endless.
I have a rather large bag of steel cut oats sitting in my pantry and I decided it was time to find other ways to incorporate them into my diet. Steel cut oats are a great source of fiber and protein, so I really have nothing to complain about.
I was in the mood for something that would qualify as a side dish or an entrée, rather than a breakfast item.The resulting Tuna & Oat Bowl is more of an updated version of tuna noodle casserole.Instead of noodles, the dish has a large serving of steel cut oats. The addition of tomatoes, dill, and goat cheese round out the dish and add a fresh taste. As an extra bonus there is no baking involved so it is quick to get on the table.
While the Tuna & Oat Bowl might not be the most photogenic, I found that it was a great dish for lunch since it kept me satisfied for a long time.It looks like I may have found a way to finish all of my steel cut oats!
Tuna & Oat Bowl
4 cups water
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups steel cut oats
4 ounces goat cheese
2, 7 ounce cans tuna, drained
1 ½ cups chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon dry dill
¼ teaspoon salt
Bring water and salt to a boil in a large sauce pan. Add the oats, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes, covered, or until liquid is absorbed and the oats are tender but chewy. Remove from the heat and let sit a few minutes. Next, stir in the goat cheese until the oats are coated. Next add the tuna, tomatoes, dill and salt, stirring to combine. Serve; refrigerate any leftovers.