Steel Cut Oats, Dr. Seuss Style - A Glimpse of Me Blog at - 157217

A Glimpse of Me

Steel Cut Oats, Dr. Seuss Style 
Feb. 13, 2010 8:27 am 
Updated: May 7, 2010 5:29 pm
It seems that one of the staple breakfast foods of almost everyone’s childhood is good old oatmeal.  Moms cook it up every morning to fill hungry tummies with warmth and nutrition before sending little bodies out into the world for school, play dates, sports, or whatever adventures are waiting.  Not MY mom, though.  None of us LIKE oatmeal.  My opinion of the stuff while growing up was that it was gooey, slimy, yucky stuff.  The only good oatmeal was the kind that was baked into cookies, but not if those cookies also included raisins.  Nope…the only black chunks I wanted in my cookies were made out of CHOCOLATE!  Friends and extended family members tried to get me to like oatmeal and I even tried to get myself to like it sometimes.  After all, it SMELLS wonderful, but that first spoonful was always enough to remind me how much I hated the stuff.  It didn’t matter what ingredients were used to gussy it up – brown sugar, cinnamon, fruit, nuts, cream, or milk; nothing could make a bowl of oatmeal edible to me, even though everyone (except my parents and my siblings) kept telling me how delicious they were and how good they were for me!  I kinda felt like that poor guy being badgered by Sam I Am in Dr. Seuss’ “Green Eggs and Ham”:
I could not, would not on a boat.
I will not, will not with a goat.
I will not eat them in the rain.
I will not eat them on a train.
Not in the dark! Not in a tree!
Not in a car! You let me be!
I do not like them in a box.
I do not like them with a fox.
I will not eat them in a house.
I do not like them with a mouse.
I do not like them here or there.
I do not like them ANYWHERE!
I do not like green eggs and ham!
I do not like them, Sam-I-am
Was there something wrong with me?  Was I missing some vital childhood gene – the gene that would allow me to like oatmeal?  Hmmm…well, at least if a genetic mutation was the cause of my lack of oatmeal amoré, I could blame THAT one on my parents!
After I grew up and moved out, I went through that phase that every young adult goes through.  You know what I’m talking about.  That phase where we only eat the three or four foods we truly loved as children, because we are cooking for ourselves now and we can have Spaghettios every day for a week if we want to!  That didn’t last too long, though, because I truly love to cook and have been addicted to recipes ever since I was in grade school.  So, once I got past the “I can eat whatever I want” phase, I decided to once again try to like oatmeal.  I didn’t jump right into the deep end and expect to love oatmeal, but I figured I could at least learn to like it.  I tried all the different flavor varieties of instant oatmeal, even the one with “dinosaur eggs” in it that “hatched” little gummy dinosaurs in your bowl of goo.  Heck, I even tried adding chocolate chips to it.  After all, chocolate chips made oatmeal cookies delicious, so why not a bowl of oatmeal?  But no…I still could not even bring myself to tolerate that brown, slimy mass.  So, I gave up…until a couple of weeks ago.
I spend quite a bit of time on the Recipe Exchange here at AllRecipes.  One of the other regulars there, known as “SD”, had been talking quite a bit about “Steel Cut Oats” and I was intrigued.  I asked her several questions about them and she gave me some awesome answers.  Other regulars on the Exchange tried the steel cut oats and really liked them, but I was still skeptical.  See, all of these people who liked the steel cut oats also liked regular oatmeal.  Even so, I went ahead and bought a small amount of steel cut oats at my grocery store’s bulk foods section and cooked them up.  I added brown sugar, a little cinnamon, and some milk.  They were okay, but still nothing that would make me want to eat them every morning.  Then one day MomZilla posted a thread saying she had tried an experiment with regular oatmeal that turned out awesome.  She cooked them with chicken broth and added savory seasonings like garlic, salt, and pepper and a little cheese.  Suddenly a light bulb went off…and it was a brilliantly bright light bulb!  I suddenly KNEW why I didn’t like oatmeal!  See, I’m not the kind of person who likes sweets all that much.  A chocolate cake is safe in my presence indefinitely, but a bag of potato chips is doomed to a quick and violent demise if it’s left within my reach.  All those years I had been trying SWEET versions of oatmeal, because “that’s how everyone eats it”.  No wonder I wasn’t liking them!  The next day I cooked more of the steel cut oats and added a little butter and some salt and pepper to my bowl.  They were OMGosh GOOD!!  In fact, I liked them so much that I have been eating a bowl of them every morning for almost two weeks!  I love the way the oats kind of “pop” when you chew them, sort of like barley or brown rice do.  And I love the warm, full feeling that lasts well into the day.  And the best part?  I can now tell the Sam I Am’s in my life:
I do!  I like them, Sam-I-Am!
And I would eat them in a boat.
And I would eat them with a goat.
And I will eat them in the rain.
And in the dark.  And on a train.
And in a car.  And in a tree.
They are so good, so good, you see!
So I will eat them in a box.
And I will eat them with a fox.
And I will eat them in a house.
And I will eat them with a mouse.
And I will eat them here and there.
Say!  I will eat them ANYWHERE!
*Excerpts from Dr. Seuss’ “Green Eggs and Ham” were obtained at the following web site:<
Feb. 13, 2010 8:38 am
Awesome Keri! I never thought to try them in broth, but that could also make a hearty lunch or supper side. I love them just with fruit. Great blog :-)
Feb. 13, 2010 9:15 am
I'll have to try that too. Kind of out of my box, but sounds good. Thanks Keri!
Feb. 13, 2010 9:17 am
I also talked to a friend who's sister was going through chemo & switched to a macrobiotic diet. One of her ways of using steel cuts was to make them. Roll them very tightly in wax paper & use them kind of like a pancake underneath other food. I've been meaning to try that. That would be a good way to use the savory ones.
Feb. 13, 2010 9:20 am
Hi Keri :) I never thought of making savory oatmeal. I like sweets though. Yummy!
Feb. 13, 2010 9:43 am
At least you finally figured out how you can enjoy oatmeal! It's good to know that you hadn't just given up!
Feb. 14, 2010 1:43 pm
I still can't wrap my head around the "savory" side of steel cuts. Is it like rice tasting when cooked this way? I am one that LOVES my steel cuts, but I am a brown sugar kind of gal:)
Feb. 14, 2010 10:54 pm
I have and always will eat my oatmeal with salt, pepper, butter, and honey. Call it Scottish tradition :) but that's how I grew up with it
Feb. 18, 2010 8:36 pm
Humm, I'll have to give that a try. Grew up eating mine with a little brown sugar, a little white sugar and milk.
Mar. 3, 2010 12:14 pm
I couldn't eat oatmeal or cocoa wheat or any of the hot, mushy cereals. I haven't tried them as an adult. Maybe I should!
Mar. 7, 2010 12:31 am
Now see? The thought of oats as savory sounds disgusting. They are a grain and we eat a lot of grains on the savory side but I guess I'm programmed to think of oats, oatmeal, oatmeal cookies etc. as being typically sweet. Funny how we get programmed. I have a few lbs. of steel cut oats (which I think are awesome) I'll try them maybe as a side with butter S&P.
Mar. 27, 2010 9:03 pm
I realy liked some of the food pics. How can I find out what they are and find the recipe if I like it?
May 7, 2010 5:29 pm
Sounds like a healthy version of Ramen noodles.
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About Me
I have loved cooking since I was a young girl helping my mother make dinner or bake cookies during school vacations. My favorite class in elementary school was "Nutrition", because we cooked almost every day. I have two daughters who love cooking and baking as much as I do and my husband is even getting interested. He recently started making bread from scratch and he's doing an awesome job of it! We share our home with pets of all different kinds, including birds, cats, dogs, rabbits, a rat, snakes, frogs, a tarantula, and a turtle. We also provide foster care for a local dog rescue, taking in abused, neglected, abandoned dogs and giving them a safe, loving environment to live in until they find their "fur-ever" homes.
My favorite things to cook
Rosemary garlic roasted chicken with roasted garlic gravy; Skillet cabbage; Almost any baked goods; Anything I can make in my slow cooker! Somewhere around September 2008 I decided I was going to start baking all the bread my children and I eat. I'm COMPLETELy loving it and my kids like to brag that "my mommy MADE this bread!" Their favorite is when I make bread items that aren't your traditional loaf of bread, like hamburger buns, bagels, and soft pretzels.
My favorite family cooking traditions
For several generations, my father's family has made a "family tradition" dessert item at each major holiday. At Easter, it's Italian Cheesecake, made with ricotta cheese and anise flavoring (published as "Italian Cheesecake II", if you'd like to check it out). At Thanksgiving, it's "Roly Polies", which were invented by my great grandmother when she had leftover pie crust dough she needed to use up. My absolute favorite, though, is Christmas, when we make Birds Nests. These are made out of walnut-sized balls of a sweet pie crust type dough rolled out very thin. Then we cut slits in the dough without cutting through the edge, gather every other strip, twist them up into a jumble, and then deep fry the pastries. When they are cooled, we sprinkle them with powdered sugar. It doesn't matter how many we make, they all get eaten!
My cooking triumphs
I managed to make decorated sugar cookies for Christmas 2008 that turned out awesome!! I've NEVER gotten sugar cookies to turn out good looking enough to warrant decorating them. They always turn into shapeless blobs. This particular time I reduced the amount of butter in the recipe by 25% and chilled the cut-outs for 15 minutes immediately before baking them. They turned out beautiful!
My cooking tragedies
My first attempt at making Fairy Food candy (also called seafoam candy) was a disaster! I tried cooking it too quickly over too high of heat, so it burned, smelling up the entire house for DAYS. Thank goodness I still had enough ingredients (and courage!) to try again, and everyone at my family's Christmas gathering was impressed with my second attempt. I conveniently "forgot" to tell them about the first batch :-)
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