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Friday, February 27, 2009

savory oatmeal is not gross

Kaytie and I have developed an interest in recipe contests. Could this be the way we finance our villa in northern Italy? Probably not.

But it's fun to come up with ideas. First, we sent a few recipes in to Mississippi Magazine's annual recipe contest. Then, Kaytie found a Top Chef slash Quaker Oats contest, and the brainstorming began. It could be anything, as long as the recipe involved oatmeal.

Kaytie dismissed my peanut butter-cinnamon apple-cranberry-white chocolate pie with an oatmeal-gingersnap crust idea. She said it was (1) too rich and (2) too expected. I think she was right, but on the second point only.

Kaytie's idea was savory oatmeal, topped with a fried egg and pork debris. (She'd read that oats can be treated like rice or grits.) We haven't worked the kinks out on the pork, but the oatmeal was great with a fried egg.

We made a couple variations. Kaytie did a truffled mushroom and onion oatmeal, which was great. Here's what I did.

Onion & Gouda Ris-oat-o
(I'm so clever.)

1.25 cups oats
3/4 cup liquid (half chicken broth, half water)
1 bay leaf
1 Tbs butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1/2 cup Gouda, grated
2 Tbs parsley, chopped

Put the liquid, bay leaf, salt, and butter in a pan, and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, add the oats, and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed.

This is the point when you could add anything your heart desires. I sauteed red onion in a bit of olive oil with some salt and pepper, then mixed the onion, cheese, and parsley into the oatmeal.

Top it with a fried egg, and have brunch.

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