Monday, December 31, 2007

a new favorite When I babysat for a missionary family awhile back, the mom made oatmeal casserole. It was the first time I've ever tried such a thing. You eat it warm, but pour milk over it kinda like cereal. I am an oatmeal lover, so this new twist to an old favorite was a welcome treat. I decided to make it for my own weekend-before Christmas guests who were spending the night. Like many casseroles, you can put it all together the night before, leave it in the fridge and just pop it into the oven the next morning. Here's what I did: 1/3 cup butter 2 eggs 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed 2 tsp. vanilla 2 tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. nutmeg 1/4 tsp. salt 1/2 cup raisins 2 small apples, chopped skin on 1/3 cup nuts (walnuts or pecans 1 cup plus 2 TBSP. milk 3 cups quick-cooking oats Grease a 1-1/2 quart casserole dish (I don't have a casserole dish, so I just used a cake pan). Preheat the oven to 177C or 350F. Drop in the eggs and beat them slightly. Add the brown sugar, baking powder, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well, and make sure there are no brown sugar lumps. Whisk in the melted butter and the milk. Stir in the oats. Stir in the optional raisins, apples, and nuts (although optional, these make it oh so scrumptious). Bake, uncovered, for 35 minutes. The top should be starting to brown. Remove from oven. Spoon into bowls and pour milk over the top. I just mixed everything right there in the casserole dish. This fed six of us, even with going back for seconds. I also happen to know that it is good warmed up in the microwave the following day. Next time, I am going to experiment with using Splenda instead of the brown sugar, I know it will give it a slightly different taste, but that'd be ok. Also, the original receipe I followed was slightly different. One difference is that it called for 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder; I didn't have that so I left it out. I didn't miss it, but you might.

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