Thursday, April 17, 2008

recipe round two

This week's recipe is the best breakfast cereal ever and it involves the laziest cooking method ever as well. So many superlatives in one little warm bowl o' love. The cereal? Steel-cut oats, of course! I was first introduced to their creamy goodness at the Small World Coffee house in Princeton, NJ. I used to stop by there for breakfast and get the oatmeal with some Grumpy Monkey coffee on the side. I never had any luck making the steel-cut oats at home, however. It was quite frustrating. And then one day I discovered that instead of working so hard at cooking it, I could instead employ a little laziness as a cooking method. And the lazy cooking method? The trusty slow cooker, of course!

So here's what you'll need. First, one cup of steel-cut oats. I like McCann's but I suppose the ones they sell in the bulk bin would work just fine as well. It looks nothing like the regular rolled oats. It looks like a little grain

(You will have to excuse the clutter on my kitchen counter. I am having a pantry built this week so everything is out on the counters while that's going on.)

You will also need four (4) cups of water. Actually, I put in a little extra, so it's more like 4.5 cups. I use filtered water for optimum taste.

Put the oats and water in your trusty slow cooker. Cook on high for four hours. And that's it. My slow cooker has a nifty setting that makes it switch over to "warm" rather than "cook" once the cooking time is over. You could also add some dried fruit if you'd like, such as dried cranberries or figs or currants. I prefer to add them later, but hey, your oatmeal, your rules. You could also add a half cup of half-and-half for a creamier consistency, but I think it's deliciously creamy without it.

But remember, this is a lazy woman's breakfast. So for me it's just oats, water, crockpot, then I go to bed.

So yay! Now it's the next morning and the delicious smell of the best oatmeal ever is wafting through your apartment! Turn off the slow cooker, spoon some oatmeal into a bowl and add your choice of toppings. Maple is pretty snazzy. But so are dried cranberries, walnuts, granola, bananas, blueberries, or brown sugar. But not all together. That would be pretty weird. But probably not entirely bad. Such is the power of the steel-cut oats.

This recipe serves four, so of course I have leftovers left over. So I partition them into little containers like this one, and then I have breakfast for three more days.

And that's steel-cut oatmeal, people. Happy breakfasting!

Today was a bit of a disappointment. After surviving an entire winter season with nary so much as a cold, my old friend the sinus infection is back. So I'm back on the Levaquin. I would bitch a little more about it, but there's no crying in baseball. No crying! I actually left work early (which I never do) and came home and took a big nap (again, something I never do). I think it helped. I made some spicy broth and I've been chain-drinking the Refresh tea. So I should have this nasty sinus situation kicked to the curb in no time. I am the Lesley, and I am fierce!

And now if you'll excuse me, I need to get back to my DVR shows, and then get some sleep. I have an early morning date with steel-cut oatmeal, after all! Good night.


sid said...

Oooh! Thank you thank you thank you.

Since an inspirational episode of "Good Eats" on the Food Network I've been ogling those steel-cut oats in the store for quite a while now. I thought I would never have the chance to try making them, due to laziness and a compressed morning schedule.

But you have given me the gift of a precedent. Soon I shall try the oats.

To the store!

MoSup said...

I hope you feel better soon! When you said "fierce," I suddenly had Project Runway flashbacks.

Ace said...

I thought for a minute that said "John McCain Oatmeal."

Imagine the advertising slogans for that.

Snooze said...

I like the sound of it but right now that would be one expensive bowl of oatmeal as I don't own a slow cooker.