Monday, June 26, 2017

Oatmeal for Summer Mornings

Last week, I shared one of my favorite breakfasts full of healthy fats. (If you missed that post, you can find it here.)

But a writer does not live on healthy fats, alone! There is a place for healthy carbs in our diets, too, and that's where this recipe comes in.

This one is also from the Trim Healthy Mama cookbook (and adjusted for my own preferences and pantry.)

It's called skillet granola in the THM book, but I call it oatmeal for summer mornings. It's a bit lighter and crunchier than traditional oatmeal, and a perfect way to start your morning or to have for a yummy snack.

Start with the same ingredients you love to have for your traditional breakfast oatmeal.

I used:

1/2 cup regular rolled oats
1 1/2 teaspoons stevia/erythritol blend (aka - 2 packets of Truvia)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 Tablespoons dried fruit - I use a berries and raisin blend
1 teaspoon oil (I used coconut oil)

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Meanwhile, mix the other ingredients together in a medium sized bowl.

Pour the cereal mixture in the pan and let it cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.

Don't you love the way the early morning sunshine
comes through my kitchen window?

What happens during this process is that the oats roast gently, combining the sweet flavors.

I usually eat mine with some yogurt for a quick, healthy breakfast or mid-afternoon snack. Delicious and crunchy!

In other news, over the weekend my husband and I went hunting for the elusive "Poets Table," a legendary spot in the middle of the Black Hills.

We heard about this spot from locals and on the internet, and we were determined to find it.

Also, it just so happened that our youngest son had been there on Friday - guided by a friend - and he offered to show us the way.

The directions run along the lines of "take the Little Devils Tower trail until you cross the stream twice, then turn left when you see the leaning aspen tree."

That's why it's smart to take a guide!

The trail was better traveled than I was expecting. In fact, we met several other parties heading for the same destination.

Instagram has made the Poet's Table public knowledge!

The trail got a bit steep in places. I put black arrows on the picture to point out the way...

But the views we encountered were worth the climb. :)

And suddenly - there it was!

It was fun to hunt down the legendary spot, and now we can say we've been there.

And the views were just as good on the way back down.

If you're wondering about the perspective, those green bushes at
the base of that rock wall are 50' Ponderosa Pines

So you can say that I'm enjoying summer in the Black Hills!

Have you ever gone searching for a legendary "secret" spot?


  1. Ohhhhhh, I love this! Were you inspired to write a poem? I think I would leave a book of my favorite poetry, and a thank you note to all poets.
    I'm so glad I live in a world full of poetry!

    1. We didn't this time. The trail was crowded, and the spot was small. But another time, maybe! The cabinet was stuffed with notebooks that I'd love to leaf through. :)

  2. I am in awe of your hiking skills!!!

    Thanks for sharing the lovely scenes.

    As for the oatmeal - I love oatmeal and this sounds delicious. But But But Everyone always says oatmeal is this great breakfast. It doesn't work that way for me. I end up hungry very soon after eating oatmeal. It doesn't have that stick-to-it-ness for me.

    Not sure why I'm different. ;)

    1. That oatmeal thing - I'm the same way! I don't think it has enough protein by itself to make it a great breakfast. That's why I add yogurt. But I'm still hungry a couple hours later!

      So I use it more for an afternoon or bedtime snack. :) For me it's better as a short fuel boost rather than a "get the morning going" meal.

  3. I'm in awe of your hiking skills too -- and I love the whole concept of a poet's table!!!! Did you leave any written words behind?

    I'm afraid I'm a traditional cooked oatmeal with raisins kinda gal. Even in the summer. But this sounds like something my daughter could use as a breakfast on the go kind of thing so I'll pass it on.

    1. This sounds like it would be great for your daughter, because you can fix it, let it cool a bit, then grab it and go.

      And we didn't leave any words behind. Not only were others coming up the trail behind us, but someone was flying a drone over our heads. That intrusion was enough to send us on our way :(

  4. What a beautiful hike, Jan. Those gorgeous views have me itching to get back to Ouray. We've found a few "secret" spots there, but they're all legendary.

    Now about this breakfast. I must have missed this in the THM cookbook, but I'm definitely going to give it a try. I love granola and this has a very granola feel to it, so count me in. I'm adding ingredients to my grocery list right now.

    1. The thing I love about this is that it's crunchy and sweet. And you can eat it hot or cold (it gets crunchier as it cools).

      And of course, you can double or triple the batch for more than one serving!

  5. How cool is that! What a grand adventure!

    And a great recipe to boot. Thanks, Jan!

    1. It was a great adventure! I was ready to go again the next day. :)

  6. Oh, I am in love with this post... you went to the Poet's Table and I think that's about the coolest thing I've seen in a long, long time!

    What a great idea, and then one must ask oneself: How did they get the table and chairs up there?

    A story, there!

    This is so cool, and I love the black arrows, guiding my way, clever girl!

    I'm making lemon cookies for the funeral this week... and I might have to eat a bunch of them. Just because.

    Some days are cookie-bingeing days.

    1. {{{hugs}}} Yes, some days are cookie bingeing days.

      And I've wondered about how someone got the furniture up there, too. And then I heard that the poet's table used to be across the canyon a bit, and they had to move it because of a rock slide or something. Now THAT would have been a chore!