Oatmeal has been a breakfast staple in my house as far back as I can remember. My mom used to make it for my sister and me before bundling us up and sending us out to wait for the school bus on cold winter mornings. When I didn't want to go to school, it often worked to my advantage; I would feign fever, knowing that the hot oatmeal I had just consumed would skew the thermometer reading in my favor…I thought it was genius, but it didn’t take my mom long to figure that one out!
Back then I liked my oatmeal with butter, mainly because I liked to watch it melt into all the nooks and crannies, and lots of sugar. Today I opt for healthier additions such as fresh and dried fruit, chopped nuts, a drizzle of honey or tsp of brown sugar, and a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg. Recently I bought a package of dried figs for some muffins I attempted to make (I don’t want to talk about it), so I decided to use some of the leftovers. It turned out sweet, chewy, and really yummy!
The first thing to do is to make the oatmeal. I like to use the old fashion oats, even though they take a little longer, because I enjoy the texture. You can certainly use whatever kind you like, just make sure to add a pinch of salt while cooking. If you've ever had oatmeal that tasted really bland, it's probably because the person didn't add salt; I try to tell my husband this all the time, but he just can't get past putting salt in his oatmeal...mixing scrambled eggs in it, he has no problem with, but a pinch of salt is just going too far! Also, if you like your oatmeal to be less runny (as I do), cook your oats on a higher temperature.
Once your oats are cooked to your liking, simply add in the rest of the ingredients and enjoy! If you like, you can add the dried figs in before the cooking has finished so they will soak up some of the liquid, but they are already pretty soft and chewy.
Wrapping it up
Whether trying to start the day off right with a healthy breakfast, or attempting to play hooky from school/work/chores, I hope you enjoy this recipe!
1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal, prepared according to package directions
Pinch of salt
3 dried figs, sliced or chopped
Sprinkle of nutmeg (a little goes a long way! Too much will make your oatmeal taste bitter)
Cinnamon to taste
Brown sugar to taste
Milk if desired
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