an exclusive feature from author and grandmother extraordinaire, Arlene Michlin Bronstein*
This healthy recipe with its combination of oats, nuts, and fruit, takes ho hum oatmeal to a whole new level. It’s the perfect winter warm-up. You can even make it the night before, cover it with plastic wrap, and refrigerate. The next morning, take it out of the refrigerator as the oven is preheating, uncover it, and bake according to the directions. If you like, you can double the recipe and put it in a 9X13 pan.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2/3 cup rough chopped pecans or walnuts
2 cups old fashioned oats
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 3/4 cups milk (you can also use almond, coconut…)
1/3 cup maple syrup (or honey)
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 ounces of fresh blueberries (or more) (frozen will work too) – divided
3 teaspoons raw sugar (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square baking dish or 10X7 rectangular pan. Place nuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast for 4-5 minute. Watch to prevent burning.
2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the toasted nuts, oats, cinnamon, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Whisk to combine.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the milk, maple syrup, egg, butter and vanilla. Whisk until blended.
4. Use about 1/2 cup berries (or more) to cover the bottom of the pan. Cover the blueberries with the dried oat mixture. Then drizzle the milk mixture over the oats. Gently shake the pan so the liquid goes through.
5. Scatter remaining berries over the top. If desired, sprinkle with raw sugar.
6. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 – 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the oatmeal feels firm to the touch. Cool for 5 minutes. Cut into squares and serve.
*Arlene Michlin Bronstein is a freelance writer and author of several books including Beautiful Buffets II and Carlos; Contemporary French Cuisine. She was the Executive Producer of the PBS Special, My Word Is My Bond: Voice From Inside the Chicago Board of Trade, based on her book by the same title. Her most recent book, How Did Nonnie Get to Heaven? is a children’s book about loss. Currently she is a contributor for The National Business Post. She is fascinated by the life events that make each human being a unique storyteller. Arlene lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with her husband Keith. They have been married for almost 50 years. They have three children and 5 grandchildren.