Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Spiced Cranberry Oatmeal with Cocoa Nibs

There's nothing better on a cold winter morning than a hearty bowl of steaming hot oatmeal to fill up your empty belly. But, really. Plain old oatmeal just gets boring after a while. So, we like to mix it up a bit.

Usually, it's just a matter of adding a bit of dried fruit and maybe a pinch of cinnamon. But, this time, we pulled out the big guns.

Remember the mornings when your mom mixed a little special something into your morning bowl of hot cereal? In my case, the favorite was Malt-O-Meal with a dash of cocoa powder... mmm, that chocolate goodness. Perfect way to fool me into thinking she was feeding me dessert for breakfast.

Well, this oatmeal is a little bit like that. We added a stick of cinnamon, a few cardamom pods, some dried cranberries, and a nice handful of cocoa nibs.

Yeah -- cocoa nibs. One of my favorite new toys.
They're only slightly less addictive than crack. They up the chocolate quotient in chocolate chip cookies... and provide a pleasant crunch in that unsuspecting handful of healthy homemade granola. And, in this case, they ramp oatmeal way up to VIC status (that's Very Important Cereal, if you must know).
Creamy & spicy...
Tart, yet sweet...
With a hint of chocolate.

This oatmeal is definitely the adult version of the classic. I recommend giving it a try.

Spiced Cranberry Oatmeal with Cocoa Nibs

Oh -- and if you're intrigued, but you can't seem to find cocoa nibs in your area, they're available for ordering online through one of my favorite sources for high quality spices, The Spice House. And, if you happen to be into trivia, Patty Erd, one of the co-owners of the Spice House, just so happens to be the daughter of spice Mogul, Mr. Penzey himself, who sold the family business to her before he retired. So, she knows a little bit about the spice business.

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  1. Never even heard of cocoa nibs before - looks good!

  2. I've never used cocoa nibs in porridge before, but it's sure an interesting idea. And I have some -- yippee! I use them in making my own power bars or granola bars.

    Yes, they are addicting little things, aren't they? I love making a mix of rice, teff, and sometimes GF oats for breakfast. I add all kinds of things to the mix, but it never dawned on me to add cocoa. Great idea.



  3. I need to get some cocoa nibs, I really like them too. Your oatmeal sounds great!

  4. YUUUM....too bad its 70 degrees here. :)

  5. Love the nibs, never thought of putting them in there...very nice!

  6. Oh does that look good, I love oatmeal!

  7. I love oatmeal in the morning and I like to spice it up with maple syrup! It's how I trick myself into thinking I am eating pancakes. Hehe.

  8. Lo, why can't you be my mommy? You could make this for me for breakfast. I'd clean my room all the time and everything.

  9. I"m going to look for cocoa nibs! I am an oatmeal lover and this looks different than everyday fare.

  10. Ohh that looks so good! Cocoa and oats? The perfect combo!

  11. Oatmeal YUM! I saw the cocoa nibs at my local gourmet shop, but they were kind of expensive, so I passed. If they'e really almost as addictive as crack (LOL!) then maybe it's for the best.

    We tried your prize winning Buffalo Chicken Dip for the SuperBowl and it sure was a winner. I didn't have any blue cheese dressing, so I added crumbled blue cheese, but the substitution worked just fine. My crew gobbled it up.

  12. Guess what I'm having for breakfast.....I love having Penzey's!!! makes living here almost bearable!

  13. LOoks good. I'm ready for a midnight snack & I'm thinking that's healthy.

    Thanks for the tip about the cocoa nibs & the trivia.

  14. Very clever idea. I am not a huge fan of oatmeal, but I do try to eat it on a fairly regular basis because it's so good for me. I'm always looking for new ways to spice it up. I have some cocoa nibs in the cubboard. Time to do some experimentation!


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