Thursday, January 20, 2011

CEiMB: Vanilla Spice Oatmeal

This week's Craving Ellie in My Belly recipe was picked by Mary of Popsicles and Sandy Feet.  She chose for us to make the Vanilla Spice Oatmeal from So Easy: Luscious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Week by Ellie Krieger.  This is a simple recipe, but a hearty and healthy one.  It makes a wonderful breakfast that will keep for days in the fridge, so you can make it on Sunday and enjoy a great breakfast throughout the week.

I made quite a few changes to the original recipe to accommodate what I already had on hand in my kitchen.  First, I used steel-cut oats instead of old-fashioned oats.  I really love the nutty, chewy flavor of them, and if you stir them often while they are cooking, they become really creamy, similar to risotto.  Granted, they take quite a bit longer to cook than the old-fashioned oats (about 25 minutes), but I think it is worth it.

I added dried cranberries instead of raisins.  This recipe has a unique technique in which you add the dried fruit at the same time you add the oats, so the dried fruit plumps up and releases some of its flavor into the oatmeal.  I used some honey cinnamon almonds instead of pecans, and used cinnamon to complement the almonds.  

This isn't a dish that you typically find in a cookbook, and it is one that you might easily pass over because it is so simple, but I am glad I participated this week.  I learned a new trick for oatmeal that I will use again and again.  Thanks to Mary for this week's pick, and be sure to check out the blogroll to see what other bloggers did with their recipe!


Bri said...

I'm glad to hear you liked the steel cut oats in this. I did not love this oatmeal, but I do think if I tried the steel cut version I might like it better, because it would have a bit more substance.

Also, I used the dried cranberries just like you did and liked that swap!

Peggy said...

I have never heard of steel cut oats. I like the cranberries idea. Your oatmeal looks so warm and satisfying!

Mary said...

I am glad you liked it with the steel cut oats. I bet I would have liked it more had it included cranberries too. Good ideas for next time! Thanks for cooking along with me this week :).

Kayte said...

We loved this one just as written, but seeing yours, now I want to try your version as well as all that sounds really really good and it looks the color you have on it.