Ahh, oatmeal season. It’s a beloved and frequently consumed food around here. I grew up eating rolled oats with butter and salt for breakfast. When I lived in New York right after college, I sometimes ate it for both breakfast and dinner. (You can get good quality oatmeal in a New York City bodega—they always have a vat of the stuff simmering behind the counter. I realize this sounds somewhat less delicious in the retelling.)
Later, when I flirted with corporate life, I experimented with instant oatmeal but couldn’t get on board. It was gluey and expensive. And such small portions! But most disconcerting was its fake-foodness. Oatmeal is simple stuff, a whole food easily boosted in flavor by the addition of other whole foods. Yet Quaker Peaches and Cream Instant Oatmeal (for example) is filled with stuff you don’t want to eat. Case in point: creaming agent. And the peaches? They’re actually are dehydrated apples, artificially colored and artificially flavored.
Luckily, in about 20 minutes, you can make a big pot of steel cut oats simmered with frozen peaches, vanilla, and basil. Stash them in 16-ounce portions in your freezer and ta-da! Lightly sweetened, wholesome fruit oatmeal filled with late-summer flavors to warm your December mornings. All for about $1 per serving.
See the recipe for Peaches and Herb Oatmeal here.