Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Crock pot oatmeal (with oat groats): sweet and savory

crock pot oatmeal with oat groats, adapted from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker
This is my 100th post! Ok, I didn't plan this, but it is quite appropriate that this momentous occasion will be commemorated with a post about oatmeal. After never liking oatmeal as a child, I have become obsessed with this stuff in the past few months. One key change was switching from rolled oats to steel-cut, and that makes a huge difference in the taste (although now I even like the rolled kind). And I figured that while I was going for the more whole version of the grain, I might as well go whole hog and cook up some oat groats (uncut and unrolled oats - the equivalent of a wheat berry in the oat world). The unfortunate thing about whole grains is that they take longer to cook, but that's where the crock pot comes in handy.

Crock pot oat groats (adapted from "Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook" by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kauffman)

1 1/2 cups whole oat groats, picked over
6 1/2 cups water
pinch of salt
cinnamon stick

Combine everything in a 3-5 qt. crock pot. Cook on low overnight (7-9 hours). If it's thinner than you like, remove lid and cook for a few more minutes. Discard cinnamon stick. Serves 5-6.

This was my first try at making oatmeal in the crock pot, and I will definitely be doing this again. It's incredibly easy and is ready the second you want it. I was worried about getting the consistency right, but this recipe worked out perfectly for my taste.

I was surprised how different this was compared to steel-cut oatmeal. It had a similar consistency (I love that you can distinguish the individual pieces of both types), but it wasn't as sweet or nutty as steel-cut. I ended up adding cinnamon and a bit of agave to my first bowl, and that worked great. But I started to think that this would be the perfect oatmeal for a savory twist.


oatmeal with soy sauce and scallions, inspired by Mark Bittman
Mark Bittman (of "How to Cook Everything" and "Food Matters" fame) made the news when he raved about eating oatmeal with soy sauce and scallions. I've been reluctant to try it, but these oat groats were crying out for something savory, so I gave it a shot (adding a couple of dashes of soy sauce and about 1/2 of a green onion, chopped). The conclusion: I'm addicted. This is fabulous! The only downside is that you're stuck with onion breath for the day (and even brushing my teeth doesn't seem to get rid of it). It's totally worth it, though.

You may have noticed that I've been trying to improve the blog over the past few days. This means that I've been digging through old posts, and it's amazing how much it has changed in just 100 posts. I'm still loving this (probably a bit too much), and I can't wait to hit 200!

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

thanks for the awesome recipe. we love it!!!

Katie said...

I'm glad you're enjoying it!! It's one of my favorites :)

Robyn M. said...

Wow, how awesome that you just posted this. Exactly what I was looking for! Would you believe that I actually googled "oat groat crockpot"?!

Katie said...

Robyn - I'm glad you found it! I'm also glad that there are other oat groat lovers out there :)

Jessica said...

I also googled "crock pot oat groats" and came up with this. I can't wait to try it tonight!

Katie said...

Jessica - I hope you enjoy it!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the recipe. They are absolutely the best oatmeal --- so tasty!

PickleMama said...

Funny, I just googled "oat groats crockpot," too! Definitely going to try this! We purchase bulk oat groats because we have a little machine that rolls oat groats into oatmeal (Marga), but it takes longer to cook that instant/quick oats, more like steel cut. We've tried doing them in the crockpot overnight, but (even using a timer to delay starting them) they get too overcooked to suit us. So I wanted to try just cooking the oat groats...

Beth said...

I made this last night and all 4 of my kids proclaimed it to be "AWESOME" thanks for your useful post!

Katie said...

Anon and Beth - I'm glad you enjoyed it!

PickleMama - I've never heard of a roller for the home kitchen. I think that in factories rolled oats are steamed a bit, which I'm sure reduces the cooking time. I hope you enjoyed the groats!

Peapod Four said...

Going to try this tonight!

Extraordinary Ordinary Life said...

I made this today (last night actually) and I love it. I don't like oatmeal but this I will eat.

Katie said...

Peapod - I hope you enjoyed it!

Extraordinary - I'm glad you liked it, and thanks for the comment!

Sara said...

Thanks--I will have to try this very soon! I love steel cut oats for the same reason as you--the fact that you can still distinguish the morsels of oat.

Anonymous said...

we had these whole oats sitting around forever, have been getting into the crock pot lately, and seemed perfect... just put them on, hope they are great like you say!

Anonymous said...

Have a friend who doesn't like oatmeal going to have her try this and a great excuse to use these groat up, that have been sitting around. Can't wait till the morning, I am going to add some real vanilla bean. Thanks for taking the time to post!

Anonymous said...

This is similar to a recipe I just tried; you might want to check it every hour past 5 to see if it's already done.