by Fresh and Frugal
Things have been more and less stressful than usual, probably not in the way you’re thinking. While resuming classes and working two jobs has somehow proven less stressful than anticipated, it’s the weather that’s making life a little difficult. Thank goodness mom wiggled a strong snow shovel into my car before I started the long haul back to the East coast, because it’s gotten quite a lot of use. For instance, a snowpocalypse struck a couple of weeks ago, icing Philadelphia in 11 inches of snow overnight.
Needless to say, classes were cancelled the night before, and I was left to dig myself out of both the apartment (no thanks to the wretched people living downstairs and a landlord who lives in Florida) and my parking space. Not that I had anywhere to go, but there’s no better time to dig yourself out than just after a fresh dusting. Anyway, I met all sorts of people: two willing to lease me apartments within a block, and one block manager. He’s an older man, very sweet and roughy-hardy, with hands that have seen plenty of work. Before I knew it, two hours of digging myself out turned into a morning of digging him out, and clearing the sidewalks on both sides of the block. By the time I got back inside, the coffee pot had switched off and the coffee itself had gone stone-cold.
So it was time to take matters into my own hands — after pulling on a dry pair of sweat pants and big, chunky sweater, of course. Oatmeal it is! It’s one of those foods that wouldn’t get me too excited as a kid, but is now a rare treat saved for those mornings when there’s enough time to slow down and take some time to make good, homey food. Mom used to glaze the mealy mixture with brown sugar, stud it with raisins, and pour just enough milk over the top to create a floating oatmeal island in the middle of the bowl. With a couple of itty-bitty tweaks, I made sure oatmeal was on the breakfast table that day, and for the rest of the week.
1 c steel-cut oats
1 1/2 c water
Optional: brown sugar, walnut pieces, raisins, dried cranberries, milk
Put the water on to boil. When it’s reached a rolling boil, add the oats and boil uncovered for 5 minutes. Cover and allow to simmer for another 30 minutes.
Spoon into dishes and top with anything you like. Brown sugar and dried fruit are the best, I think. Add milk if you want to, and enjoy it!
Tip: I divvied up the remaining oatmeal into small containers and stuck them in the fridge, so I would have enough to get me through the rest of the week’s breakfasts. put just the oatmeal in the fridge. Stick it in the microwave for 1 or 2 minutes, and then add toppings when you pull it out.