Scratching my Brain – and a Plug.
There is this little part of my brain where the creativity lives. It is very tiny. But every once in a while, something scratches it and BAMMO! let the ideas roll.
I follow some blogs, through a blog reader. One I like a lot is Herbivoracious because I try to cook vegetarian with some regularity, and his pictures are purty, and if you haven’t seen it you should click on that link and roll around for a while. He has a facebook page, which I follow, and the other day he asked for links to other Vegetarian blogs, and I found Healthy Slow Cooking.
Healthy Slow Cooking is a vegan blog centered on using a slow cooker. Since I currently have only a refrigerator and sink (and no walls) in my kitchen, I have decided, after a week using the roaster and the grill, to put everything away except the crock pot.
And in one of those wonderful moments resulting in what Rob Brezny calls pronoia (the sneaking suspicion that the universe is conspiring in your favor) I got to Healthy Slow Cooking just in time for Oatmeal Week. You should really go over to Healthy Slow Cooking right now, before you do another thing, before you read another word, and tiptoe through the creative plethora of oatmeal recipes over there. Really. Now. Go. I’ll wait.
Back? Wow! Right? My brain has been CRANKING since I saw that with all the incredible possibilities of oatmealy goodness. So I sent her a message this morning, asking if she minded if I linked to her blog and stole her basic recipe, and played with it, and she very graciously said yes.
I LOVE oatmeal, but have had bad luck with it in the slow cooker in the past, and have learned some things. 1: Do not use rolled oats. I have heard that you can slow cook them, but this has not been my experience. They either burn or come out as unappealing yick. 2: Don’t use a slow cooker that is bigger than 4 quart, and if you halve this recipe, I would use a 1 – 1 1/2 quart, as Kathy recommends. Too much space, and I think that may contribute to the burn.
Without further ado, I give you Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Oatmeal, with credit to Kathy at HSC.
Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Oatmeal
The Basic Oatmeal Recipe (Doubled, because I have 4 people to feed)
- 1 cup of steel cut oats (I use McCann’s Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal)
- 4 cups of liquid (Most of Kathy’s use So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk. You could use water, but at 50 calories a cup, why on earth would you?)
- 2-4 Tablespoons of sweetener (Like Kathy, I prefer agave nectar. Adjust based on the level of sweetness you like)
What I Added To the ingredient List to achieve Chocolate Raspberry Goodness
- 2 Tablespoons of Cocoa Powder
- 1 Cup of Frozen Raspberries
- 1 Square of Ghiradelli 100% Cacao Unsweetened Dark Chocolate
- 1 Tbsp of chopped walnuts
What you do
- The night before you decide you want to eat this, spray the inside of a smallish slow cooker with cooking spray. I used a 4 quart, but a little smaller would be okay. Bigger might be a mess. I cannot overstate how easy this step makes clean up. The oatmeal just pulled away from the sides in a skin.
- Put the oatmeal, the coconut milk, the cocoa and the raspberries in the crockpot and turn it on low.
- Go to bed. Try to sleep with visions of breakfast dancing in your head.
- Wake up about 8 hours later. Immediately remember that you have an oatmeal treat waiting for you in your kitchen with a refrigerator, a sink, and no walls. (Also electrical outlets, thank heaven).
- Stir in the agave nectar. I used 2 Tablespoons, and it was just sweet enough, but not as sweet as a decadent brownie. I would note that the raspberries added a sweetness all their own, so more agave may have made it sicky sweet. I would leave it at two, and then let your individual people add additional sweetener as they like. Stir the oatmeal thoroughly. It will be liquidy on the top and a bit dryish around the edges. Mix it up good.
- Put a fourth of it in a bowl. Sprinkle with chocolate and walnuts.
- Turn heat down to “Keep Warm” so it will be ready if the teenagers ever wake up.
Nutrition Info: Calories – 284, Calories from Fat – 89.4, Total Fat – 9.93 g (15% RDA), Saturated Fat – 6.26 (31% RDA), Cholesterol – 0, Sodium – 15.03 mg, Total Carbohydrate – 42.13 g (14% RDA), Dietary Fiber 6.69 g – (26% RDA), Sugars 9.79 g, Protein 6.15 g – (12% RDA). Est %age calories from: Fat: 34%, Carbs: 59%, Protein: 8%. Percent Daily Values based on 2,000 calorie diet. Individual needs may vary, based on individual diet.