I’m the kind of girl that loves her oatmeal in the morning.
Albeit that wasn’t always the case. When I was a kid, I loathed oatmeal with a passion (like many foods I now love. Sorry Mom). Whenever my mom made it for breakfast, I would sigh and be filled with dejection. I’m sure there were also several incidences of whining in there somewhere.
It wasn’t until I was in college that I discovered my love of oatmeal. I bought it mainly because it was dirt cheap, and I was a dirt poor student. And then I discovered that, this stuff is actually good! Not only good, but healthy too! And cheap! After that, there was no looking back. I’ve been a sucker for oatmeal ever since.
There is one predicament I’ve faced with this food however. As much as I love oatmeal for breakfast, when it’s blazing hot in the summer, and I’m blazing hot, the last thing I want to eat for breakfast is a steaming bowl of hot anything. As a result of this, I’ve always ended up replacing oatmeal with cereal during the summer. Once it cools down in the fall, then I switch back to mainly oatmeal for breakfast.
This summer, I feared, would be no different. As soon as the temperatures started climbing, I looked to my giant box of oatmeal (Costco size baby!), sighed with longing, and turned to a box of cereal instead.
Then one fortuitous day, I made a discovery!
Yes, cold oatmeal that requires no cooking, but is soft and creamy and deliciously cold and refreshing! It’s brilliant!
I discovered the method of soaking oatmeal overnight in milk/yogurt on the food blog, Kath Eats Real Food.
I’d heard of soaking oatmeal overnight in water, and then cooking it like normal the next morning on the stove, but this. This, my friends, is above and beyond.
Anyone unfamiliar with the health benefits of soaking whole grains (including oatmeal) overnight before using, you can read an easy to understand and great explanation about it on Kitchen Stewardship. Basically it helps our bodies digest whole grains better and absorb more of the nutrients.
Back to heavenly cold oatmeal. Here’s what you do to make it. Mix 1/2 cup oatmeal with 1 cup of milk, plain yogurt, or a combination of the two (I like using 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup of yogurt). Cover it, pop it in the fridge, let it set overnight, and enjoy lovely cold creamy oatmeal for breakfast the next morning. You can put it in the fridge the night before or up to 24 hours ahead of time (this makes it extra creamy and good in my opinion).
You can add whatever mix-ins you want, either the night before or the morning you eat it.
Another great plus of this method of preparation, is that it saves so much time in the morning. Your not standing over a pot of boiling oatmeal for 10 or so minutes. You just whip it out of the fridge, add some toppings, and you’re good to go! Or if you already added some toppings the night before, you just have to whip it out of the fridge and start eating! Brilliant.
Now, because I am incapable of operating a camera (or any heavy equipment) in the wee hours of the morning, I have no pictures of my cold soaked oatmeal, so instead I’ll share a few from Kath Eats Real Food. All photos are from Kath of Kath Eats Real Food and not mine. Next time I’ll try and take a pic of my cold oatmeal.
Now go forth! And enjoy your oatmeal, despite the heat index! And be glad!