I am so excited that spring is here! That said, I’m sad about letting go of cold weather mornings for one reason only– this oatmeal, the oatmeal combination that was my breakfast obsession this past winter.
It starts off innocently enough with plain old rolled oats cooking on the stove top. Although here’s a trick I learned from John: rather than bringing the milk to a boil per the package directions before adding the oatmeal, I combine them and heat them together so that the oatmeal ends up creamier, I presume because the starches have a longer time to release and seep into the milk, giving this the consistency of a loose pudding. A small handful of light brown sugar and some dashes of cinnamon also help here.
This oatmeal is garnished with toasted pecans and dried cherries. Looks pretty healthy and delicious on its own, no? But here’s what makes this oatmeal decadent– I hide a spoonful of chocolate hazelnut spread in the bottom of the bowl. The heat of the oatmeal melts the chocolatey spread and as you stir in the oatmeal garnish, the secret star ingredient is revealed. Oatmeal, spiked with cinnamon, with tart cherries and buttery pecans swirled with heavenly chocolate and hazelnut! Call me gullible, but even though I was the one who’d make my oatmeal and knew well enough about that little puddle of Nutella awaiting me at the bottom of my bowl, I’d still be giddy and delighted every time I ate this. Nutella Surprise Oatmeal– definitely worth enduring cold weather for.
- 1.5 cups rolled oats, not instant
- 3 cups skim milk
- big pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon plus a couple more dashes of cinnamon, divided
- 1/2 cup dried cherries
- 1/2 cup toasted pecan pieces
- 2 tablespoons chocolate hazelnut spread
In a medium saucepan, combine oats, skim milk, salt, brown sugar, and teaspoon of cinnamon. Cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally until oatmeal achieves your desired consistency– for me, it’s creamy, but not too thick, cooking for about 15 minutes. While oatmeal cooks, combine the dried cherries, pecans, and a couple of dashes of ground cinnamon in a small bowl.
Place 1 tablespoon of chocolate hazelnut spread in each bowl, then divide the oatmeal between the bowls. Top with the cherries and pecans then serve immediately.