Thursday, July 7, 2011

Bitchin' Baked Apple & Cinnamon Oatmeal

By far my most favorite experiment in the kitchen thus far: baked oatmeal. Sounds unsexy, right? Oatmeal is a snooze-fest, health food that you put up with to keep your heart healthy and your waistline small, I know. Until today I was in that camp. Let's just say, I've been converted. Baked oatmeal is the new granola or if you really want to know what it tastes like, it's like apple cobbler and a gooey oatmeal cookie made love in your mouth. I can't sell it enough. Just try it, who doesn't want apple cobbler and oatmeal cookies making love in their mouth? No one I can think of.

I'm not going to even bother crediting any one source for this recipe because a lot of other food blogger's experiments went in to what ultimately became my recipe. That said, on the first try I hit it out of the park on this one. Did I mention, I got this whole baked oatmeal idea from fitness mags and blogs that were trying to spruce up the mundane grind of your morning oatmeal. Instead, I baked this bad boy for "dinner for breakfast" added some turkey bacon as a side (man do I eat turkey bacon a lot, or what?) and threw together some fresh fruit on the side.

  • 3 c oats (not the quick cooking kind, the old fashioned)
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 c chopped apple pieces (you can put dried fruit or other fruits in and you could probably go as far as 1 1/2 cups depending upon how much action you want going on in there)
  • 1 c milk
  • 1/4 c butter
  • 1/4 c applesauce (I used unsweetened and this was still plenty sweet)
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • Preheat oven to 350
  • In a large bowl combine the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder and salt
  • In a smaller bowl mix together the milk, butter, apple sauce, vanilla and eggs
  • Add the liquid mixture to the oat mixture and whisk to combine
  • Grease pan (cooking spray or crisco) and lay apples on bottom of pan
  • Pour in to a 9" pie plate or an 8 x 8" or 9 x 9" baking dish (I used an 8 x 8" glass casserole dish and it worked out great)
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the oatmeal is set
  • Serve immediately with a splash of warm milk
  • Serves 8 (in full disclosure I ate a double serving and it was worth every extra second in the gym tomorrow)
Other thoughts:
Next time I bake this - which will be soon - I'm going to go for a banana walnut version. After that I'm dreaming up a carrot cake-esque version... stay tuned!

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