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Weekend Breakfast: Cinnamon-Raisin-Walnut Oatmeal

by | Nov 9, 2008

Breakfast is the best time of day to get whole grains into my diet, and I love it. However breakfast is also my most automated meal, something I usually throw together in a half-awakened daze. On weekdays, morning time is precious and efficiency is the greatest virtue. But on weekends, we have the luxury of making breakfast a little more fun.

On cold weekend mornings, few things are more satisfying than a warm, steaming bowl of oatmeal. Not that weird-flavored stuff in little packages, but real oats boiled with raisins and topped with nuts and cinnamon. Do it right and this meal doesn’t even need any sugar, making it one of the healthiest breakfasts you can eat.
To me, the quality of the Trader Joe’s raisins makes this meal. They do not even remotely resemble those hard little pellets sold by Sun-maid. Rather they are big, plump and colorful. Adding them first with the water and boiling them for a few minutes rehydrates them and makes them even bigger and juicier.
Investing in a high quality cinnamon is a good idea too. I have McCormick Saigon Cinnamon, which is delicious.
Weekend Oatmeal for One

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup Trader Joe’s Jumbo Raisin Medley
  • 1/4 cup crumbled walnuts or pecans
  • tons of cinnamon

Add raisins and water to a small pot and bring to a simmer. Simmer 4-5 minutes or until the raisins are plump, then add oats. I usually rinse the measuring cup with some water to free the remaining oats that are stuck to the side. This will provide a bit more liquid as well, which is usually a bonus.

Simmer oats, stirring occasionally until they reach your desired tenderness, about 5 more minutes (add more water if necessary ~1/4 cup). When done, move oats to a serving bowl and crumble nuts on top. I usually add a splash of soy milk (I’m lactose intolerant) at this time to make the oatmeal a little more fluid. Cold milk provides the added benefit of cooling it down a bit, which makes it easier to add the cinnamon; you should avoid allowing too much steam to enter your spice jar. I like to add a lot of cinnamon, so that I can really taste it in every bite.

With this much flavor I doubt you would need any sugar. But if you want to add some more sweetness, a touch of brown sugar or honey won’t kill you.

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