Friday, January 28, 2011

Eating comfort food at the comfort station

Yesterday Matt and I had the day off together but he came down with a cold (or possibly the flu) and spent the day sleeping in the comfort station.  For those of you who don't know what the comfort station is, which I am suspecting is all of you because I just came up with the term yesterday, it is a little place (usually in the living room) where a really comfy area is set up for you to lay when you are feeling ill.  There were probably times as a child, and were too sick to go to school, when your mom would set up an area in the living room with lots of pillows and the softest blankets where you could watch cartoons, eat ice cream and just be comfortable.   That is the comfort station.

So while Matt rested in the comfort station, I decided to do some cooking...

Breakfast:  Maple brown sugar oatmeal with cranberries
Lunch:  Fresh mozzarella, spinach, mushroom, onion, sausage pizza (1/2 whole wheat).  Spinach salad
Dinner:  Chicken egg drop soup with sticky rice

Almost all the ingredients used to make these meals were purchased at a fraction of the normal cost.  Go here to see how I shop.


I've never made oatmeal before until yesterday.  At least not the type that doesn't require opening a little brown pouch and pouring water over it.  I despise the little brown pouch...  Or maybe I don't hate the pouch as much as the contents within the pouch and what it turns into once it comes in contact with water. Its like a Gizmo and Gremlins sort of situation.

Apparently Matt likes oatmeal.  To him it is comfort food that reminds him of his childhood.  And while I can't stand the instant stuff, I've never had made-from-scratch oatmeal.  I figured I shouldn't hate something I haven't even tried.  After all, canned asparagus (I hate) tastes nothing like fresh (I love).

Also, I had to do something with all those oats in my cupboard.

Oh...  And it turns out oatmeal is actually pretty good.

Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal with Dried Cranberries

1 1/2 cups of low fat milk
pinch of salt
pinch of cinnamon
vanilla extract
sprinkling of brown sugar
drizzle of maple syrup
3/4 cup oats
sprinkling of brown sugar for the top of the oatmeal
cranberries or any other dried/fresh fruit

Set oven on broil.  Bring milk, salt, cinnamon, brown sugar and maple syrup to a boil. 
Add as little or as much sweetener and flavorings as you'd like...  Taste the flavored milk, if you like it then it's good.  Brown sugar will also go on top of the oatmeal so careful not to over sweeten.
Add oats, cook on medium heat for about five minutes stirring frequently.  Once oats have softened and the mixture is thick, pour into a oven proof bowl, sprinkle the top with brown sugar and broil for a few minutes until sugar has melted.  Add cranberries or other fruit.  Bowl will be hot so careful!

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