Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Savory Steel Cut Oats: A Spicy Soup!

Usually when it comes to making oatmeal, we think sweet. Maple syrup, berries, nuts, cream, raisins and other dried fruit are all amazing toppings for this great winter breakfast.

One of my favorite things about living DIY is eating food that's off the beaten path. Hence, savory steel cut oats!

Steel cut oatmeal is an entirely different animal from that Quaker stuff you buy in a bag. Think you don't like oatmeal because of the mushy texture? Steel cut may change your mind.

Instant oatmeal is made of oats that have been steamed and rolled out, while steel cut oats are the whole kernel that has been cut into pieces. Although they take longer to cook, the extra 30 minutes is worth it!

Steel cut oats have a delicious chewy texture and slightly nutty flavor. In this savory soup, I'd bet barley or brown rice would be a great substitute.

To save time, cook up a big pot of steel cut oats on a Sunday night for easy reheating throughout the week. (The McCann's brand website has additional recipes and cooking tips.)

Chicken-Man and I visited friends and family in New York last weekend, so I was short on time and used a pre-made carrot+ginger soup mixed in with the oats.

The photo above shows the chunk of ginger I added and a splash of the soup. I ended up adding about an equal amount of soup to the oats. You can choose how soupy or hearty you like your dish.

If I was up to my full Foodmaking Power I really want to try this soup with the frozen butternut squash from last summer and coconut milk (or yogurt from Mill Valley).

From an energy use and/or food security point of view, this soup is nice because it can be made from pantry items that don't need to be stored in the fridge.

Adjust spices to your liking:

- cumin
- cinnamon
- ginger root
- hot sauce

Feel free to experiment as you see fit!

I've had quite a cold the last few days, and this soup has been a great balance of spicy and soothing. I poured on a TON of hot sauce to really clean out my nose. Yum!


bittersweetblog said...

I've seen some ideas for savory oats, but none really grabbed me... Now, the idea of spices, butternut, and coconut in the mix is something else altogether! This is definitely something that could shake up the morning routine in a tasty way.

Denzel said...


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