Mother's Day is approaching on Sunday, and I've found myself thinking about my mom this week and how grateful I am for all she has done for me throughout my life...the sacrifices she's made, the lessons she's taught, the love she's given...and I realized there is just no way to express in words how much she means to me. Some of my favorite memories from growing up include the crazy antics of my siblings and our mutual disgust for oatmeal. It was never official, but we were all very active members of the Oatmeal Hater's Club and while it may seem weird to you, I think hating oatmeal together really bonded us as kids and may explain why we're still great friends as adults (IMO). As I've thought about it this week, I was reminded of an old postI wrote years ago when we still used blogger for our challenges and decided that in honor of my mother and Mother's Day, I'd resurrect this oldie, but goodie from the past...
This recipe review will be so much more effective (and dramatic) if you understand my relationship with oatmeal. It can be summed up in exactly 3 words…I HATE OATMEAL! There is just no way around it. I . HATE . OATMEAL…everything about it is completely repulsive and disgusting to me. I would venture to say that not only do I hate it…I LOATHE it. Just the thought of eating it makes me dry heave a little. And, I really wish that this was just me being overly dramatic (okay, I be exaggerating A LITTLE, but honestly, not much).
Growing up, my family was poor - like really poor. There are 7 kids in our family, and my dad was a potato farmer. My mom did everything she could to scrimp and save, which meant we ate A LOT of potatoes and almost every breakfast was…you guessed it…OATMEAL…soggy, gooey, sticky, pastey, revolting, nasty oatmeal. The challenge every morning was to see which of us kids could successfully dispose of their bowl of oatmeal without having to eat even one bite (in the toilet..in the garbage…buried outside in the garden, didn't matter how you did it, but the goal was to never be caught) . The irony of the situation was…my mom's reason for feeding us oatmeal as opposed to cold cereal or some other edible alternative was because oatmeal "sticks to your bones and keeps you full longer." The obvious problem with that logic that we have since explained to our mom was…cold cereal would have "stuck to our bones" longer than…NOTHING. Unfortunately, I was usually not bold enough (or clever enough) to get rid of mine which means that I generally ended up eating it. We were allowed to add honey, cinnamon and raisins to our hearts content. We quickly learned though, that adding to the goo just increased the amount of paste you had to choke down before being allowed to leave the table. So, I mostly just plugged my nose and gagged it down…(seriously, just thinking about it now is making me a little queasy!)
As I've gotten older and (a little) wiser, I understand the health benefits of oatmeal and have tried NUMEROUS times to make myself like it…sadly, it has NEVER worked. I still hate it (except in cookies). I hate old fashioned oats, quick oats and even those gross little packets of flavored oatmeal. I've tried it with fruit, sugar, butter, jam, syrup, raisins, almonds, EVERYTHING…it still makes me gag every…single…time!
In my recent efforts to improve my eating habits, I decided to revisit the subject of oatmeal ONE LAST TIME in the form of STEEL CUT OATS before giving up on it entirely. I've heard that they are much better than the rolled kind and healthier for you as well. So, I went on the hunt for an "edible oatmeal recipe", which seemed like an impossible task, but ended up being a success (see recipe below)...It was a recipe for Apple Pie Oatmeal that caught my attention and when cooked with steel cut oats was actually very delicious.
I think the big difference was the texture. Steel cut oats are way less sticky and pastey. They look different too. I thought they would look like regular rolled oats, but they are round and look like an actual whole grain (weird, right?, since they ARE an actual whole grain)!! And the apples and cinnamon were delicious. It did kind of remind me of eating warm apple pie. The apples were not too mushy and the apple juice and cinnamon gave the oatmeal great flavor and made my house smell amazing.
I would whole heartedly recommend this recipe! It's very yummy and hearty…and really "stuck to my bones!" if you know what I mean...(wink wink)!!
P.S. DO NOT tell my siblings about this…they may brand me as a traitor to the Oatmeal Haters Club, which could destroy our relationships forever!!
P.S. HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY TO ALL THE AMAZING MOMS OUT THERE...MAY YOU BE PAMPERED AND SPOILED ALL DAY LONG.
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