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    Entries in Colors! (8)

    Friday
    Jun072013

    Baked Triple Berry Oatmeal

    If you’re like me, you like the taste, heartiness, and health benefits of oatmeal, but aren’t big on the squidgy texture. Baked oatmeal is the perfect solution. 

    Here’s what you’ll need: 

    • 1 cup old fashioned oats
    • ½ cup oat flour (or whole wheat)
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • ¼ cup sugar
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 1 egg
    • 1 ½ cups milk
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 ½ cups mixed berries
    • ¼ cup chopped pecans
    • 2 Tablespoons butter 

    First thing, go ahead and preheat your oven to 350° and butter an 8x8 pan.

    Put your oats into a mixing bowl.  I happened to have ground flax seed on hand, so I added a tablespoon.  It is absolutely optional, though. 

    Add the rest of the dry ingredients. 

    Stir that until everything is evenly distributed. 

    Measure your milk and add the egg and vanilla.

    Whisk that together and pour it over the dry ingredients. 

    Stir until everything is incorporated and add the berries.  I used ½ cup each of blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries.  I happened to have fresh strawberries, so I used those rather than the frozen ones.  Either will work just fine, though.  In fact, probably any kind of fruit, (apples, peaches, cherries, whatever) fresh or frozen, will work.  You just want a total of 1 ½ cups. 

    Gently stir in the berries and pour everything into your prepared pan. 

    Slice 2 tablespoons of butter into thin slices and spread them over the top.

    Into the oven for about 40 minutes.  It should be golden around the edges and just starting to brown on top. 

    The longer you allow it to cool, the better it will stay together.  Then just cut it into squares and enjoy!  And the best part is, any leftovers can be reheated in the microwave in about 30 seconds, so it’s instant breakfast. 

    What food textures do you have issues with? 

    Friday
    Jul272012

    Missing My Mazurkas

    Back when I lived in Utah, there was a bakery called Great Harvest.  Well, not only did they have fabulous bread, they had one called savory loaf that had artichokes, sundried tomatoes, parmesan… sorry, I digress.  In addition to those fabulous breads, they also had delicious baked treats.  My favorite was something they called mazurka bars.  Basically, it’s a buttery, chewy, oatmeal cookie bar topped with sweet, juicy berries.  Anyway, I doubt they’ll actually give up the details of their recipe, so I did some playing and came up with my own. 

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    • ½ cup butter
    • ½ cup sugar
    • 1 egg
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • ½ cup flour
    • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ½ teaspoon baking powder
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • 1 cup oats
    • 1 cup raspberries
    • 1 cup blueberries

    As always with cookies, make sure all your ingredients are at room temperature.  If you’ve forgotten to pull something out ahead of time, here’s a tip to get you baking right away anyway.  Before you get started, go ahead and turn your oven to 350°.  Put your softened butter into a mixing bowl along with the sugar. 

    Cream those together until they’re nice and light and fluffy.

    Add the egg and vanilla.

    Mix until the egg is thoroughly incorporated, scraping down the sides at least once. 

    In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.  A lot of times I don’t bother doing that with cookies, but because there is such a small amount of flour in this, it’s necessary.

    Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture. 

    Mix just until combined and stir in the oats.  The dough will be very soft and somewhat sticky.  That’s just how you want it. 

    Glop the dough into an 8x8 pan.  Don’t worry about greasing or parchment or anything. 

    Spread it around until it’s all the way in the corners and level on top. 

    Now here comes the fun part.  Sprinkle all those beautiful berries on top.  Yay colors! 

    I know you’re thinking that is way too many berries, but trust me, it’s not.  Bake at 350° for about 40 minutes.  You want the bars to be dry on top and a beautiful golden brown.  I’m telling you, magic happens in the oven. 

    Now comes the hard part.  Cool them completely before cutting.  If you don’t, they’ll just fall apart.  With the sweet and tart of the berries, the buttery, chewy base and just a hint of cinnamon, these are to die for.  They’re even worth turning on the oven in the summer. 

    What special treat does your local bakery make that you just can’t pass up?