Thursday, February 28, 2013

Gingerbread Oatmeal

Ah, breakfast.  I <3 breakfast.  It's the start to my day, and can really set the mood -- why start off badly?

I'm always in search of new breakfast ideas, because unlike some people out there (not naming names but you know who you are) I like variety.  I vary my lunches and suppers, so why not vary breakfast too?  The other day, on a sweet, bakery-spice kick, I started looking for alternatives to my stand-by porridge.  Don't get me wrong, it's still a regular, but I needed a little variety.  So, I came across this little clean eating gem.  I modified the recipe to use the slow cooker because this worked better with my schedule, but the other way is good too.

Depending on your preferences, this can be dressed up or down with sweeteners -- maple syrup is good, but molasses, honey, or agave would work too, just as would a bunch of fresh raspberries if sweeteners aren't your thing.  I absolutely love the smell of this stuff! What a great way to wake up the morning after it's been sitting in the slow cooker all night.

Slow Cooker Gingerbread Oatmeal
Makes: 4 1-cup servings

Ingredients:
4 cups water
1 cup steel cut oats
1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp ground ginger
optional: real maple syrup, to taste

Directions:
Mix everything together in a slow cooker as the last thing you do at night before bed.  Leave it on the lowest setting of your slow cooker (the 'keep warm' setting on mine).  Check on it as the first thing you do in the morning, and voila!  Breakfast is ready in a wonderful smelling kitchen!

Enjoy!
Source: The Gracious Pantry.

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