I’ve never been a breakfast person, but since everyone around me is, I cook breakfast. My kids ate either Cream of Wheat or homemade oatmeal when they were little, usually with apples, cinnamon, milk, and maple syrup.
They’re all grown up now, but I still make this for my boyfriend, when there’s no milk for cereal. Don’t balk at the salt — it really balances the sweetness of the oatmeal.
- 5 cups water
- 3 cups whole oats
- 2 TBSP brown sugar
- ½ tsp salt (more to taste -- this is a crucial ingredient)
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- ½ cup chopped dried mango (or any dried or fresh fruit)
- ½ cup pecans (or walnuts, sunflower seeds, whatever)
- maple syrup to drizzle (the real stuff)
- a sprinkle of cinnamon
- milk is optional
- Add the water, oats, sugar, salt, and cardamom to a medium saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil.
- While the pan is coming to a boil, bring a cast-iron skillet to high heat. Toss in the nuts and stir around for half-a-minute to lightly toast. Immediately dump the nuts onto a cutting board, cool for a minute, and then chop.
- As soon as the oats are boiling, reduce heat to medium-low, add the fruit and half of the toasted nuts, and simmer uncovered for ten minutes, or until the oatmeal is thickened.
- Ladle the cooked oats into bowls and top with the rest of the toasted nuts, a drizzle of maple syrup, a sprinkle of cinnamon, and an optional glug of milk, if you happen to have it.