Sunday, February 26, 2012

Creation Sunday - Oatmeal Roundup

Today Hillary is going to share some oatmeal recipes she has been into lately.

I love oatmeal as an ingredient because it adds some fiber and a unique flavor to anything you cook with it.  I had been ignoring it for a while, but recently I went through most of a canister of quick oats in about 2 weeks because of all the yummy oatmeal treats I made. So today I am going to share with you two indulgent recipes I made recently, and a healthy creation of my own from many years ago.

The first one is a super simple no-bake recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies.  My mom made something very similar for me when I was growing up and I remember it being a staple among treats I made for many years (before weight watcher's).  When I was trying to come up with something indulgent and super easy, the other day, I remembered these and whipped up a batch while fixing lunch.  Without further ado, here is the recipe on food network's website.  I do this recipe completely without modification. They're perfect, even for picky me, exactly the way they are.  Although, on occasion, I have wondered what a variant made with almond butter would be like... hmm...

The second one is a Fabulous Banana Pancake Recipe By Racheal Ray called Oatmeal Cookie Pancakes.  I did make some modifications due to my husband's tastes, my preferences, and according to what I had in the pantry.  I made a 1.5 batch because we had three bananas.  I used a mixture of turbinado sugar and white sugar instead of brown sugar because it's what I had. Because I had some cake flour and I thought it might add a little fluffiness to the pancakes, I replaced about a quarter cup of the all purpose flour with cake flour. Because hubby doesn't like sour cream, I used 3/4 C of buttermilk and 1 cup of whole milk to replace the sour cream and milk in the original recipe.  I intentionally used a little less buttermilk than the amount of sour cream called for because I didn't want the batter to be too thin.  Instead of putting the walnuts in the batter, I set them to the side and added them in to individual pancakes.  In some of the pancakes, I used chocolate chips instead of walnuts.  No one in my house likes raisins at all, so I left them out (we eat oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and are thoroughly offended by the idea that in many people's minds, oatmeal cookies=oatmeal raisin cookies, hehe).  I added a pinch or two of salt, but other than that, I made no modifications to the seasonings.  Hubby said they were excellent, which is a big compliment from him because he tends to like pancakes a specific way (at least from my standpoint).
The pancakes I made turned out thick and flavorful (the way we like them in my house).  If you wanted a thinner pancake, I'm sure adding a little more liquid would be okay and if you wanted to go thinner than that, replacing some of the oats with flour might be the way to go.

The last recipe is one I made for low-calorie multi-grain chocolate chip muffins many moons ago when I was on weight watchers.  When I make chocolate chip muffins, I often go for this recipe rather than a standard one because they are more flavorful and unique than most recipes on top of being more healthy.  They can even be made into pina colada muffins with some minor alterations.

Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Muffins
1 C whole wheat pastry flour
1 C quick cooking oats
1/2 TSP salt
1 TSP double acting baking powder
1 egg
1 TBL white sugar
1 TBL Honey
1/2 C lowfat yogurt
1/4 C apple juice
3/4 C chocolate chips or peanut butter chocolate swirl chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Spray muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray or place muffin cups in tin.
Whisk together first 4 ingredients.
In a separate bowl, lightly beat egg and then add sugar while continuing to beat.
Stir in yogurt, honey and apple juice.
Stir dry ingredients into wet until just moistened evenly. Add additional apple juice or water if needed for consistency.
Stir in chocolate chips until just evenly distributed.
Spoon into prepared muffin cups.
Bake for 10-15 minutes or until fork/knife/toothpick inserted into muffins comes out clean.

PiƱa Colada Variation:
Substitute 1/2 C shredded coconut and 1/2 C chopped dried pineapple for the chocolate chips 

One more quick note on this recipe: Yes, I know this method is different from the standard, traditional muffin method but I promise it works.

We hope you enjoyed the recipes.  Stay tuned for exciting interviews and updates soon!

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