Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Daddy's Steel Cut Oats


My dad is the kind of guy who gets into habits, and sticks with them. For as long as I can remember, my dad has been enjoying hot cereal for breakfast. He does occasionally mix up what sort of hot cereal he's into, but the basic routine remains the same. Pretty much any hot cereal reminds me of him - Cream of Wheat, Grits, Oatmeal, Hot Cereal... I think he likes them all.

When we were little, my brother and I were more into cold cereal. Because I was a little slob, I would eat my cereal and then leave my bowl sitting in the living room (or wherever). Soon enough, either the dog or the cat would find the bowl, stick their little head in there and see if there was any milk or cereal left in there.

I guess all this pets+cereal bowls action grossed my dad out (fair enough), so he went out and got himself a very special bowl and a very special spoon. At least, this is how I remember the whole thing going down. He even had a special spot for his bowl - well out of reach from us kiddos who might not respect the sanctity of his personal dishes! I remember the whole thing through a childlike filter of awe and wonder. As far as I know, he probably still has this bowl and probably still keeps it in the same spot.

For a while, my dad was really into the hot cereal from Bob's Red Mill. Then, he got really into the Steel Cut Oats... and then, just a year or two ago, he stumbled across the Quick-Cooking Steel Cut Oats, and I think that is still his current favorite. In fact, when I told him that I was going to have a bowl of oatmeal with (real) maple syrup for breakfast in his honor, he said "That's what I had for breakfast this morning!" Ha ha. Like I said, he is the kind of person who really gets things dialed in and sticks with it.


These days, I still love cold cereal, but I also really like oatmeal. I usually only end up making oatmeal on days when I am headed off to a big yoga class, or if I want a hearty breakfast that will keep me going well past noon. Usually I just use regular oats to make my oatmeal, but in honor of my dad, I picked up a bag of Quick Cooking Steel Cut Oats, and made myself some for breakfast. I even served them up in my most special bowl with my favorite spoon. The QCSCOats were really great, I think I am a convert! They had a bit more bite and chew to them than regular oats, which I found really appealing. I added in some chopped walnuts and a generous dose of pure maple syrup... for a totally delicious breakfast. Dad would be proud!

20 comments:

  1. Such a lovely post! I love the photo of your oatmeal and your vegan bowl :) It's made me think that maybe I should work on a vegan porridge-themed post, living in Scotland and all!

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    1. do it! With autumn on the way, it's porridge season. My steel cut oats success got me to thinking that I should expand my hot cereal horizons!

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  2. I love this whole series so much. Every post gives me a big hug of warm fuzzies. Also, great bowl! :)

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    1. :) yes, I knew you would appreciate the bowl! ha ha

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  3. I love your dad's attitude about breakfast — ruts are A-OK. And his special bowl sounds like something I would do. Your whole family sounds special, and your mofo theme to highlight your memories is like a cozy blanket.

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    1. :) thank you so much, sweet Andrea! I sorta have my own breakfast rut going on right now... though my bfast ruts tend to last for a few months, not multiple decades.

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  4. I have a special mug that is just mine. I love how it feels in my hands. Seems like a bowl is next on my list. xo

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    1. yeah, Musty and I each have a special mug too. Mine is not super cozy, because it's made of metal, but it's one of those ones that keeps drinks warm forever, and i love it for that. Musty's is huge, which is his favorite characteristic in a mug. :)

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  5. That looks so comforting! When it comes to breakfast, I also have my routines. I always eat oats with soy milk, flax, banana, and some other fruit. I really love your mofo theme. It reminds me about a lot of stuff we did in my family, too.

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    1. That sounds like a pretty perfect oatmeal scene. I usually just make my oatmeal plain, but just a few little add-ins can really make it more special. <3

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  6. your dad sounds identical to me. i've been eating oatmeal every morning for breakfast for the last seven years (seriously). AND i have a special spoon and bowl that i keep in a special spot to use every morning for my breakfast ;) i'm glad i'm not the only one who does this, it makes me feel like less of a weirdo.

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    1. Caitlin, I LOVE THIS COMMENT. :)

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  7. Anonymous11:04 AM

    The hot cereal routine is a good one. I just got started on it a couple of years ago because I ride my bike before work and want something warm and filling when I get there. I only got turned on to the QCSTOats recently - they are delicious and chewy. I like maple syrup as you do, or sometimes fresh chopped dates.

    Really loving this series, Amey - such great stories!

    :-) jen e.

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    1. Thanks jen! I always love seeing a comment from you! Chopped fresh dates in oatmeal sounds RAD, and I never would have thought of it. I'll try it pronto!

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  8. I discovered steel cut oats last winter and ate them non-stop! Walnuts and maple sound like perfect toppings. I have a favourite porridge bowl and spoon too :)

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    1. :) I still have a big bag of my steel cut oats, so I will have to explore the wide world of other topping ideas. What else did you put on yours?

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  9. Haha I love your description of your dad's routine! My grandmother has a breakfast routine too, she has eaten a bowl of Grape Nuts and half a fresh grapefruit every morning for over 30 years! I've never seen her not eat it. And grapefruit always reminds me of her. :)

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    1. yay!!! what a great story! Grape Nuts used to be one of my most faves, though I haven't had it in years. Maybe it isn't vegan? That's probably why. I love that she's had the same thing for breakfast for all those years. Any time you miss her, you can just eat some grapefruit and remember her. <3

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