Tag Archives: oatmeal

Healthy Yummy Oatmeal Muffins

A couple of weeks ago we were staying with some friends up North. The guys went skiing and us girls stayed back at the house. We got some things done, went shopping and then for a very nice walk. The inspiration for this weeks recipe came from my girlfriend making a healthy muffin as something to grab on the way out the door in the morning when in a rush. I can appreciate that; most mornings are pretty hectic around here.  We have also been eating a lot more healthy oatmeal for breakfast.
IMG_5057
My daughter purchased a really cool rice cooker that we try to put steel cut oats in the night before and set the timer for them to be ready when we wake up. It also keeps them warm until we shut it off; which is cool since my daughter wakes up several hours after us; bonus is they taste great and pretty healthy for us.


Back to the healthy muffin. I looked around online for a recipe that I might want to try. I will admit I wasn’t sure how well they would be perceived. I have tried to “health” up things before and haven’t been too successful; or at least well enough to make them a regular thing.
IMG_5044


The first thought about the recipe I found when I read No Flour No Sugar No Oil – I thought NO WAY!
IMG_5047I was very hesitant since I didn’t have any eggs or milk on hand that the recipe asked for and I didn’t have enough bananas so I also grated an apple and made them anyway. I ended up using egg beaters and some Kefir that I bought that no one liked drinking straight; but in a recipe how terrible could it be.  
IMG_5048They smelled good, looked good and believe it or not my husband LOVED them; seriously he immediately ate 2 of them and has done nothing but praise them since . Luckily my daughter and I both really liked them and I was totally amazed that even with my changes they were a hit so much so I have made 4 batches in total; mostly because I wanted to use up the Kefir before it went bad I plan on packaging them up and putting them in the freezer.
IMG_5039

Ingredients
2 ½ cups old fashioned oats (1 ½ cup ground, 1 cup whole) (keep some aside  and press on top of muffins before baking – optional)
2-3 large overripe bananas – I used banana & grated apple – applesauce would work too
2 large eggs – egg beaters also work
⅓ cup honey
¾ cup milk – I used kefir
2 teaspoon real vanilla
2 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
⅓ cup currants – optional
⅓ cup chopped nuts – optional – I used pecans

Directions
Preheat oven to 325’F. Place oats on a baking sheet and make for 10-15 minutes to brown; stir once. Once cooled; in a food processor place 1 ⅕ cups of oats and blend, you are going for a flour like consistency. Turn oven to 350’F
IMG_5051

Mash the bananas and grate the apple add to the rest of the wet ingredients; eggs, honey, milk and vanilla.
IMG_5052
Add dry ingredients; including all the oats to the wet ingredients and mix till incorporated. Let sit for 10 minutes to allow the oats to soak.  Add fruit and nuts if using

IMG_5042

Approximately 163 calories each

Line 12 cup muffin tin with wrappers; scoop batter into cup filling to the top.

Bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Recipe adapted by cookingatclarktowers: Brendid.com

Oat and wheat sandwich bread

The mornings have been so chilly here in NH and us being “true Yankees” I am not sure if we don’t; or rather we won’t turn on the heat until at least mid to end of October. There were a lot of sweatshirts and blankets lying around the house of late. I have mentioned a few times that I tend to turn the oven on bake or cook something just to help take a little; very little; chill out of the air.bread 009

I found a recipe for Oat and Wheat sandwich bread that I thought sounded pretty cool and we are definitely a sandwich eating kind of family. My guys take one or two each for lunch pretty much daily. I thought it might be kind of cool to have a homemade loaf of bread, it also freezes well which is key. Plus making homemade bread has been on my bucket list of things I really want to be good at. If I can master the art of making a rustic loaf of artesian bread, what an even sweeter life it will be.

BUCKLE, CHICKEN SALAD, LUNCH BREAD 029

I made this recipe as written a couple of weeks ago when the house was super cold so I needed to be a little creative in order for the dough to rise. I placed the bowl on a heating pad f or a couple of hours. Today I am making the bread again and since we broke down and turned the heat on the house is fairly warm and the dough looks AWESOME – just tasted it and it’s a keeper. it is delicious and I am making a sandwich for our late lunch right now!!!

bread 034

While the bread is easy to make and tastes good I actually needed to adjust the flour for my families liking; I thought we would like it more if we cut some of the whole wheat with some all-purpose flour. While my in-laws loved it, it was too much whole wheat for my families taste. I have both ways listed here for you to choose what you think your family would like. Feel free to play with this recipe I am going to!

BUCKLE, CHICKEN SALAD, LUNCH BREAD 020

Makes 2 standard size sandwich loaves

5 cups whole-wheat flour – I’ve had some leftover (sealed) in the pantry for a while now – I used 2 whole-wheat and 3 AP-flour for today’s loaves
2 cups rolled oats (I used old fashion that I had on hand; for a less noticeable texture you can use quick-cooking)
1 Tbs. kosher salt
3 Tbs. raw or brown sugar, honey or agave nectar – I used my brother-in-law’s honey
1 large egg
¼ cup olive or vegetable oil, plus enough to coat the bowl
1¼ cup lukewarm water
1¼ cup lukewarm milk
1½ Tbs. instant yeast

Bread Dough
You can make this by hand or using a stand mixer. Same timing would be used for both.

In your bowl add the water, milk and honey or sugar, stir in the yeast. Add the egg and oil whisk to combine. Add flour, oats and salt. Using the paddle attachment at the lowest speed; mix for 1 minute. The dough will be wet and course. Let it rest for 5 minutes.

BUCKLE, CHICKEN SALAD, LUNCH BREAD 024 BUCKLE, CHICKEN SALAD, LUNCH BREAD 025

Switch to the dough hook and mix on medium-low for 2 minutes. The dough will be a little firm and a little smoother; while still being a little sticky. If it is too wet add a bit more flour, a spoonful at a time. If it is too stiff, add a little more water, a spoonful at a time. Continue to mix the dough with the hook for 4 minutes.

BUCKLE, CHICKEN SALAD, LUNCH BREAD 028

Turn the dough onto a slightly floured surface. Knead a few times, than form into a ball. Lightly oil your mixing bowl and return the dough ball to it. Cover with plastic wrap and let it proof at room temperature for at least 60 minutes. It could take longer if your house is cold. It needs to double in size; or can be transferred to the fridge and left to ferment overnight or up to 5 days. If proofing in the fridge, be sure to remove it from the fridge for at least 3 hours before you plan to bake it.

bread 004 bread 006

Forming the loaves

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured counter and divide in half. Press each gently into a rough rectangle; fold in the sides so the dough is roughly the width of your loaf pan. Roll the dough from the bottom to the top and place in your loaf pan seam side down. Repeat with the remaining dough. Let proof at room temperature for about an hour, or until the dough has risen about 1 inch above the rim of the loaf pan. Halfway through rising, preheat the oven to 350’

bread 007

starting to rise

bread rising 003

almost done rising

Bake bread

30 to 35 minutes; rotating pans once for even color; a cooked loaf should sound a little hollow when you tap it and the internal temperature should read 190 degrees. Remove loaves from the pans and let cool on a rack. Cool completely before slicing and place in freezer bags; if you don’t eat it all before you have a chance to freeze it.bread completed 002 bread completed 003

Recipe originally published on smittenkitchen.com adapted from Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day

Big Debbie – Oatmeal Creme Pies

Yep I did it again; my husband was reading his weekly Sunday magazine this morning and they have a Food & Drink section with a recipe of the week.  He said “honey you should make these and blog about them”.  I can read between the lines, he really didn’t have any preference if I blogged about them for not; he did however really want me to make them; SO I did – I did mention I was an enabler right!

10-2014 photo clean out 058

I didn’t have everything on hand so he said “give me a list and I will go and get what was needed”; like it was going to be an option for me to go. I feel it is a small price to pay for someone else to bake.  Similar to whoever cooks; someone else has to do the dishes.  It’s only fair right?

The recipe of the week was a play on the Little Debbie oatmeal creme pies.  I am calling them Big Debbie because they have a tablespoon of bourbon in the cookie part and the creme asks for some of the butter to be browned. They are kind of a grown up version of the tasty little morsels, over the years I have bought the little version of them on a whim or maybe a weak moment going through the store, not very often maybe a couple of times a year if that, but they never lasted long when in the house. These are pretty darn good; well see how long these last.

10-2014 photo clean out 045 10-2014 photo clean out 048 10-2014 photo clean out 049 10-2014 photo clean out 051 10-2014 photo clean out 054 10-2014 photo clean out 055 10-2014 photo clean out 061 10-2014 photo clean out 059

Cookie

Preheat 350′

2 cups AP flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

¾ teaspoon salt

2 sticks unsalted butter

1 cup brown sugar

½ cup sugar

2 tablespoons molasses

2 eggs

1 tablespoon bourbon – I used Jack Daniels’

1 ½ teaspoon vanilla

2 ½ cups oatmeal

Line a couple of sheet pans with parchment paper.  In a medium bowl whisk the flour, baking soda, and ½ teaspoon salt.  In a mixing bowl, beat the unsalted butter and sugars until fluffy. Beat in molasses and then the eggs.  Add the whiskey and 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla. On low add the flour mixture and then the oats.  Using a tablespoon, or similar size scoop for uniform cookies; place on parchment a few inches apart. Bake 10-12 minutes.

Creme Filing

3 sticks butter, room temperature and divided

3 tablespoon heavy cream

2 teaspoons vanilla

¼ teaspoon salt

3 cups powdered sugar

Melt 2 sticks of butter in a saucepan; swirl around until butter starts to brown. Pour into a bowl/cup. Cool 10-15 minutes; place in the freezer for about 30 minutes. You want it solid but not frozen.  Add to a stand mixer add remaining butter beat until fluffy.  Stop the mixer and add the heavy cream, 2 teaspoons vanilla and ¼ teaspoon salt. Mix to combine, slowly add powdered sugar on low speed. Increase speed to medium and beat until smooth and fluffy.  Spread creme on cooled cookie and top with another. Makes about 20

Snacks from the past- Poop Cookies

I am pretty sure afterschool snacks have evolved over the years and some are far healthier that what I used to eat.  When I was growing up, for a spell, we had a housekeeper that also made the most delicious homemade cookies & sugar cinnamon doughnuts for when we got off the bus.  It was for a very short period in our lives, but it was very memorable.  After she was no longer with us we had to fend for ourselves and made due with whatever was in the house; which at times was not much.  I recall eating sardines on saltines, buttered bread cut up in a bowl with maple syrup. I do not have fond memories of either of those but when you go from rags to riches back to rags you figure some things out.

Carrot Cake 308

I do have some fond memories of a couple of afterschool snacks and have shared them with my kids & others.  I really have no idea where my favorite snack came from.  I can’t imagine that I came up with it; but who knows I have always been pretty creative; or at least I want to believe that I was/am.

My favorite afterschool snack was a peanut butter and fluff grilled sandwich.  Don’t knock it unless you try it.  While I know this is not a healthy snack and it shouldn’t be an everyday snack.  If you like peanut butter and fluff I encourage you to try it at least once.  It is made exactly like a grilled cheese just different fillings.  My daughter doesn’t like fluff and my husband is not a fan of peanut butter but my son loves them and makes them on occasion. I recall sitting around one night surrounded by family not sure how they came up but they are so easy to whip up; I made several of them; sliced them up and handed them out. They were a hit!

Carrot Cake 303 Carrot Cake 304 Carrot Cake 305 Carrot Cake 306

The other is a cold bean sandwich; simply buttered bread, beans done!  I am pretty sure this one came from my parents. I remember my dad putting thinly sliced raw onions on his, he loved cold bean sandwiches. Again might not be for everyone one but it is pretty darn good.  I posted that I was eating a cold bean sandwich on FB a few years ago and it definitely stirred up a response.  Some people loved them others not so much.  Same goes in my house the kids and I like them my husband does not, but his brother does.  He was one of the ones that commented on my FB post.

After reading this I hope you reminisce a little about snacks from your childhood.  If they were noteworthy share them!   I also wanted to share a recipe that I made as a child and still make to this day and it is pretty easy for kids to make if you allow them to use the stove top.

Poop Cookies (not sure why my family called them this but we always have)

2 cups sugar

½ cup butter or margarine

½ cup milk

3 TBS cocoa

3 cups oatmeal

1 tsp vanilla

½ cup peanut butter

In a large saucepan, combine sugar, butter, milk and cocoa.  Bring to a full boil over medium heat, boil for 3 minutes (do not skip this step) remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients.  Drop by spoonful onto waxed paper.  Let them set until firm.  If you skip the boiling step they will not set up.  Trust me I’ve done it, my son has done it.  Just be patient and let the mixture boil for a bit.