an oatmeal day…

…is a good day. there’s something about it that just makes me feel extra productive. like, i know i’m being responsible by taking the five minutes to prepare it or something. i went wild this morning and prepared the “chewy” version (by waiting to add the oats until the water is boiling) as opposed to the “creamy” way (starting the oats in cold water). that simple change makes all the difference. it was one of the first things we learned at culinary school… and that lesson alone may be worth the tuition… maybe. well, even if not, it’s really good that i learned it. i thought i preferred the creamier-style oats – and i often make it that way – but i realized that the chewy version brings back a wonderfully distinct taste memory of eating oatmeal at my grandparents’ house. i love that memory. [grandmom, do you make it that way? by waiting until the water boils? it definitely tastes like that in my mind.] my very own madeleine de Proust.


also, now that i’m taking part in my friend ann marie’s challenge to go thirty days without refined sugar, having my oatmeal with a bit of organic grade A maple syrup has been nice. (natural sweeteners get a pass for this challenge, in moderation. and by the way grade B is good, too, but A is a bit less refined, so less processed/concentrated and therefore less sweet.) husband discovered that there is “evaporated cane juice” in his otherwise healthy-looking granola, so it turns out there is some sugar sneaking up on us. anyway… i’m not really a sugar-all-day kind of person, but i do have those intense moments when all i want to eat are cookies and ice cream. so there’s that… and i’m hoping this challenge will help me quit those cravings. or at least, learn how to substitute the majority of refined sugar with less-processed, healthier alternatives (maple or brown rice syrup, blackstrap molasses, maple crystals, and sometimes agave, to name a few). oh and in case you were wondering: i also added raisins, ground flaxseeds, a tiny bit of unsweetened light coconut milk, and a few almonds to my oatmeal. i’m sure you were totally wondering that.

happy weekend!

p.s. interestingly – and fittingly – that cute ceramic zebra that sits on our dining table came from my grandparents’ house. a nice visual complement to my taste memory.

p.p.s. i’ve been tweeting more these days.

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