Homemade: Dark Chocolate Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Bacon and Chili Powder
Our good friends at the blog Would I Buy it Again (a must read, by the way) recently asked “How do you take your oatmeal?” It’s a great question, but one which seems all too predictable for the multitude of ‘health’ bloggers out and about the interwebs today. And while I too am guilty of buying into the common standbys of apples and cinnamon and peaches and cream low fat milk, truth be told I like to try to be a little bolder in my oatmeal creations these days. After all, what more is oatmeal than a grain, and what more is a grain than a vehicle of flavors both sweet and savory?
Case in point, one of my latest oatmeal creations: Dark Chocolate Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Bacon and Chili Powder.
Looks good, don’t it? Not to pat myself on the back too much , but this homemade concoction was really quite good, although I did run into some problems that I hope to fix the next time I make it. Interested in recreating this soon-to-be classic on your own? Well then, let’s start with the ingredients. They were:
- 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
- 1 Cup Water (or milk)
- 3 Slices Cooked Bacon, preferably of the smoked variety
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground chili powder
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 piece dark chocolate, chopped
As far as making the actual oatmeal goes, it’s relatively simple. Combine the oatmeal with the water, cinnamon, chili powder, and Worcestershire sauce and cook in a microwave according to the oatmeal’s directions. Typically I like to do this in a super big bowl, and to start off on a lower power level before bringing the microwave up to full blast. After cooking the oatmeal almost to the point of where you’d want it to be cooked to if you were to eat it straight-up, remove the bowl and let cool. Then, microwave your cooked bacon to warm it up and render some of the surface fat. Chop it up and drop into the bowl of oatmeal, and give the bowl some more seasoning to taste. Finally, cut up your dark chocolate into small pieces (or shavings) and drop into the bowl. Nuke it all up again for thirty seconds or so and remove, cool, and swirl. What you have is a chic representation of one of the most classic salty-sweet combos ever devised, and a damn good Sunday brunch if you ask me.
As for those problems I mentioned, there are a few things that made the oatmeal taste somewhat “off.” One deficiency I found was the ratio of Worcestershire sauce to sugar. Basically, unless you go with a very sweet bacon, you may be better off dropping a tablespoon of brown sugar and/or splenda in your bowl to balance things out. Secondly, realize that your oatmeal is only going to be as strong as the quality of ingredients that you put in it goes. I admit that as a money-strapped college student who “procured” half these ingredients from my dining hall (and the others from a Wal-Mart) I wasn’t exactly dealing with the height of freshness here, and likely would have benefited from fresher spices. Still, I consider the results of this little foray into the world of savory-sweet oatmeal a success, and look forward to coming up with more outside the box renditions of the breakfast staple in the future.
Previous Crazy Creations via Adam: