Anyone who has ever lived with me for any period of time knows that my morning go-to is oatmeal. I love it. It is quick and simple, it keeps me satisfied for the morning, even when on my feet on a busy ward (or nursing a baby every 2 hours) and I love the creamy texture. Not to mention that oats are very healthy for you. 95% of the time I have my porridge the same way (made with milk and raisins, and just a sprinkling of cinnamon over the top). Once in a while though, I like to shake things up a bit and play with other flavourings for my morning go-to, and even sometimes to sweeten the pot a little, as it were. I've posted a few oaty recipes before (Persimmon Porridge, Fenugreek Porridge, Sweet Potato Porridge, Baked Oats) but thought it was maybe time for some more.
Cook time: 15 mminutes -- Portions: 2 -- Difficulty: Easy
Roast Chestnut Oats:
1 c oats
2 c milk
1 c roast chestnuts, crumbled or chopped
A handful of raisins
1 tbsp maple or light brown sugar
1 tsp mix spice
(Optional: a splash of cream)
1) In a small saucepan, place the oats, milk, most of the chestnuts and raisins and cook over medium heat, stirring regularly to prevent burning.
2) When it has thickened to the desired consistency, stir in the sugar and spice, pour out into two bowls, and top with the remaining chestnuts. Pour over the cream now, if using.
Enjoy hot with a good cup of tea (or coffee if that is your thing.) Hot chocolate works too.
Candied Orange Oats:
1 c whey
1 c milk
1 c oats
2 tbsp candied orange peel
A handful of raisins
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp cacao nibs
1) Place the whey, milk, oats, most of the candied orange peel and the raisins in a saucepan and soak overnight.
2) In the morning, bring the saucepan up to a simmer over medium heat. Stir regularly to prevent sticking and cook until you have achieved the desired consistency.
3) Spoon out into two bowls and top with the remaining orange peel, the cacao nibs and the cinnamon.
Both of these work beautifully for a bit of a switch-up of your morning porridge. Either or neither can be soaked overnight, depending on your tastes and what is more convenient. I tend to soak whey porridge overnight as it cuts the acidity a little and comes out sweeter than it would if made fresh in the morning. I like it both ways (pun unintended), but Hubby finds making it fresh in the morning too acidic, so I have bent to his taste here.
Conversely, although I do soak milk porridge overnight, I find it quite sweet in the morning, so I often make that in the morning instead. There are no hard and fast rules though!
Swaps and substitutions:
Both of these recipes would work with other forms of hot cereal. For example, for cream of what, substitute out the cup of oats for 6 tbsp of cream of wheat.
For a vegan or dairy-free experience, swap out the whey or the milk for your favourite nut milk. Personally, I would go for almond milk in this instance, but the choice is yours!
Instead of the mix spice in the first recipe, swap in pumpkin spice, or some cinnamon and cloves, or skip the spice altogether. Rather than the raisins, replace them with some diced prunes or dates, but be aware that these are almost a little sweeter. They do work beautifully though.
Instead of the cocoa nibs, you could be truly decadent and use chocolate chips. For my part, I would go for dark ones, but it is your breakfast! (As a side note, I have been loving cocoa nibs recently and have enjoyed putting them in all sorts of things that would normally have chocolate chips. If given the chance to soak even a little, they soften up wonderfully, while still remaining toothsome, and they have that much less sugar.)
Instead of the maple sugar in the first recipe, use light brown sugar. Be aware that although dark brown sugar would work too, this will deepen the flavour notes considerably. Cinnamon sugar or plain white would work too.
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