Leftover Oatmeal Bake

leftover_oatmeal_bakeIn the crazy world- for me- that is menu planning, breakfast is a mainstay. We have a rotation of foods we have for breakfast, one that most in the house like. Any way I can start the day with a minimum of complaining, scrambling, thinking!- that’s a good way for me.

This recipe morphed out of trying a lot of different ways to use up leftover oatmeal. Every Monday we have soaked gluten-free oatmeal for breakfast, and we always had a jar of leftovers sitting in the fridge.  Now I purposely make extra just so we can have this oatmeal bake the following day.  Tuesday is officially Oatmeal Bake Day.

I also wanted to mention that this recipe is very forgiving. I sometimes use more than two cups of oatmeal if that’s what we have, or I don’t have enough milk, or I’ve forgotten the baking soda… it always turns out not just edible but delicious. A perfect recipe for me in the morning!

Leftover Oatmeal Bake  serves 6, takes about 30 minutes start to finish 

2 cups of cooked oatmeal (we use regular GF rolled oats)

2 eggs

1 cup milk, any kind

1/4 cup real maple syrup (or honey, sucanat, coconut sugar, etc.)

2 Tbsp melted butter or coconut oil

1 Tbsp baking powder

2 cups all purpose GF flour blend (or sprouted flour)

1/2 cup add-ons, such as raisins, cranberries, or chocolate chips

 

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 9×13 glass baking dish with butter or coconut oil.

Mix the cooked oatmeal, eggs, milk, and syrup or other sweetener together in a large bowl.  Add the melted butter or oil and mix again until it is a uniform consistency.  It might be lumpy but breaks up with the next step.

Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix it all up.  Pour it into the greased 9×13 baking dish.  Bake it for 20-25 minutes, until it’s browning around the edges and seems fairly solid.  Let it cool for just a couple of minutes to avoid burnt mouths.

Everyone in our family enjoys the finished product in different ways.  I add a lot of butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon & sucanat. Some of the kids like just a drizzle of maple syrup or straight cinnamon. Sometimes I pour a little cream over the top.  Whatever you dream up you can do!!

Variations: My favorite is to add the juice and zest of one orange and make the add-on dried or fresh cranberries.  Another idea is to add applesauce in place of some of the liquid and chopped apples with cinnamon.  Or pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice.  This is really a very forgiving recipe and can tolerate a lot of changes. For the win!

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Leftover Oatmeal Bake

Ham and Cheese Soup

hamcheesesouppotLately I’ve been craving ham and cheese.  It’s a comfort combination for me.  We had from-scratch mac and cheese earlier with ham diced into it, and it’s one of the only meals everyone in our family actually eats.  I like to get Beeler’s ham from our coop.  It’s a bit pricey but I’m able to spread it out and use it in salads, on sandwiches, with breakfasts, or just about anything else.  Another bonus- everyone in the family loves it!  Obviously important to me, and rare.

I also like to challenge myself to try to make a soup that Eldest Son will eat.  So far I have had zero success.  Even this soup (which tastes like liquified mac and cheese!) went untouched by the boy.  But Younger Son ate two bowls, which I think is a first. He generally doesn’t like soup either but does not go to the extremes of pickiness that his brother does.

To make this recipe, I looked at a bunch of different chowder and ham’n’cheese recipes and combined some methods and ingredients using what we had on hand.  It turned out really well on the first try!  I made it gluten free because that’s how I roll these days, but you can make it with regular flour too, if that’s what you have on hand.  It was quick, easy, and delicious.

Ham and Cheese Soup  serves 4, takes about 30-45 minutes start to finish 

1 Tbsp bacon drippings

2 1/2 cups yukon gold potatoes, small dice

2 large carrots, peeled and shredded

1 cup broth, any kind

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1/8 tsp black pepper

3/4 tsp salt

2 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup cream

2 Tbsp gluten free flour blend (I use Namaste gluten free all-purpose blend)

1-2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 1/2 – 2 cups ham, diced small (fully cooked)

Instructions

Melt the bacon drippings in a large pot over medium-low heat.  After melted, add the broth, potatoes, carrots, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.  Bring this mixture to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cover for about 15 minutes, or until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork or knife.

Coarsely mash the potatoes in the pot.  Add the milk, cream, and flour.  Whisk it together until all the ingredients are incorporated and the flour lumps are gone.  Turn the heat back up to medium and stir until it has thickened and started to bubble.

Add the shredded cheese and stir until it has melted into the soup.  Add the ham and continue to heat, stirring and turning the temperature down if needed, until the ham is heated through, 5 – 10 minutes.

hamcheesesoupbowlWe enjoyed this on its own (it was a use-what-you’ve got meal!) but it would have been great with a simple salad. It was voted a keeper by 5/6 members of the family, so in it goes to our rotation!

Ham and Cheese Soup