Friday, November 9, 2007
I remember as a kid sprinkling brown sugar onto a grapefruit half, then looking up to see my mom's hardcore hippie friend looking at me with horror. "You're putting sugar on THAT?" She was aghast. I guess grapefruit was a sweet treat to her, but I needed some sugar on mine.
I feel the same way about oatmeal. I love oatmeal -- that is, the real kind, made from steel cut oats, that takes 30 minutes to cook and has great texture and flavor, and is not gooey and slimy and tasting of cardboard like rolled oats. I love it, but I still like to sugar it up.
This is what we do with our one cup of steel cut oats, which magically expands over the course of 30 minutes into enough food to feed our entire family of four, for something like 5-cents a serving (Who says eating well has to be expensive?) Right as it finishes cooking, we add (prepare to look at me with horror):
- a couple teaspoons of molasses
- a tablespoon or so of maple syrup or honey
- a knob of butter
That does it for the stoic adult male in our house, who is not really a sugar person (and whose recipe this is).
The rest of us add a few little hard pebbles of brown sugar or sucanat, which melt into syrupy pockets of deliciousness in the oatmeal.
So, go ahead and be horrified. The thing, it's not even nearly as sweet as pancakes. And the other things is, my eight-year-old son has been eating organic steel cut oatmeal for breakfast most winter mornings for the last few years. I think it's worth the sugar. It's soooo good, and really cheap. And my daughter joined our oatmeal-eating corps last winter at the age of 3.
If your family is of stronger moral fiber than ours, you could try raisins, or apples, or even just a little cinnamon, instead of tumbling down this slippery sugar slope with us. Either way -- eat oatmeal!
PS Did you know sucanat stands for 'sugar cane natural'? It's unrefined cane sugar, with lots of molasses flavor left in it.