Forgive that posting this recipe took more than a week – Alex and I were at a conference in the Windy City. We had lots of fun! I ate deep dish pizza 3 days in a row, learned that ranch dressing is an appropriate condiment to accompany garlic bread, had breakfast at M Henry where they serve what I call a “face latte” because it comes served in a “mug” the size of a soup bowl that hides my entire face when I drink from it, enjoyed catching up with colleagues, and, of course, reveled in the beautiful 40-degree weather.
I’m home again now, though, and am easing back into my January routine. This week that routine consists primarily of alternating cycles of studying and panicking (I have a series of big exams coming up in, eep!, less than a week) – but I’m also trying to make time for things that calm me. Which means I’m eating a lot.
Today I puttered around the apartment drinking coffee and doing some organizational work on my dissertation until I very suddenly discovered, sometime around noon, that I’d neglected to eat breakfast and was hungry. Oops! I had no eggs, no cereal, and no toast – but I did have 4 containers of blackberries (yes, I feel guilty for eating out of season, but I also feel triumphant for getting them on sale) and a mason jar full of rolled oats. And, having recently stumbled across Heidi Swanson’s baked oatmeal recipe in Super Natural Every Day, I knew exactly what to make. I adapted her recipe slightly and ended up with something delicious, filling, and healthy.
Blackberry Baked Oatmeal
serves 1 for a very hearty breakfast, or two if you want something lighter
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup milk
Approx 2 tbl applesauce (you can also use 1 egg)
2 tbl maple syrup
large pinch cinnamon
small pinch kosher salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
couple handfuls sunflower seeds
1 tbl butter, melted
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375*F. Butter the inside of a small baking dish (mine was 4 x 4) and line it with blackberries enough to cover the bottom, making sure to reserve a handful.
In a small bowl, combine the oats, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, and a handful of sunflower seeds. Cover the blackberries with the oat mixture.
In the same (now empty) bowl, whisk together the milk, applesauce, melted butter, a tablespoon of maple syrup, and vanilla, and pour that evenly over the oats. Pick up the baking dish and drop it gently on the counter a few times (from a low height, like an inch or two) just to make sure that the milk makes its way through the oats instead of just resting on the top. Sprinkle remaining blackberries and a handful of sunflower seeds on top, and then bake for 35 minutes or until thoroughly browned.
I found that the oatmeal was not quite as sweet as I liked, so I drizzled a tablespoon or so of maple syrup on top when it finished baking. That worked perfectly for me, but you should drizzle or not according to your tastes. Ultimately, this was the perfect breakfast for a chilly, hazy day like today. Enjoy!