Sunday, May 29, 2011

Favorite Recipe- Ultimate Oatmeal

Health crazes are often centered around a specific food, with zealous believers claiming that ________ (fill in the blank with goji juice, chocolate, etc)  is the one secret to perfect health.  Sadly, there is no magic elixir.  True dietary health is a complex balance of many different nutrients that support your overall fitness goals.  But one often-touted food, oatmeal, does have unique health benefits that warrant it being a part of your regular diet.

Oatmeal's soluble fiber helps lower cholesterol and stabilizes blood-glucose levels by encouraging slow digestion.  It also has a lot of complex carbohydrates and B vitamins, which are especially important for athletes.  But for all of it's value, it can be terribly boring.  I avoided eating it for a long time because it always had such a bland, dull taste.  But if you do it right, it can be mouthwatering; this is my recipe:

1. Bring 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup milk, and a pinch of salt to a boil.
2. Stir in 1/2 cup minute oats, cook for (you guessed it) one minute.
3. Remove from heat, add a small handful of raisins, one teaspoon of brown sugar, one teaspoon of honey, a pinch of cinnamon, and a dash of nutmeg.  Finish with one teaspoon of butter.
4. Top with chopped apples, strawberries, and pecans.  Serve.

The fresh fruit brings a lightness to the dish, which offsets the heaviness of the oatmeal.  And the combination of the brown sugar, honey, cinnamon, and nutmeg is the perfect seasoning.

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