This past weekend Andrew and I visited our two very good friends, Virginia and Rob, in beautiful Saratoga Springs. We love catching up with them over long, lingering meals. Like Andrew and I, Virginia and Rob are very much into eating well (from a taste, nutritional and environmental standpoint). During our day and a half stay with them we visited an apple orchard, picnicked in their local park and enjoyed a couple of wonderful meals in their home.
Our first morning there, we woke up to a bright and sunny, but downright chilly, morning. Fall has arrived! And it arrived in a hurry! The high for the day was only 60 degrees - a stark contrast from the near 80 degree temps we had experienced just a few days earlier. That morning we ate a delicious, hearty and seasonal breakfast that Virginia prepared. She mixed old-fashioned oats with sweetly tart apples, golden raisins, candied ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon. It was so tasty and satisfying that half way through breakfast I jumped up and grabbed the camera and snapped a couple of pictures, citing that I wanted to post her recipe idea on the blog, hence the picture of the half-eaten bowl of oatmeal...
Virginia's Apple & Ginger Oatmeal
Virginia used buckwheat honey in this recipe, which is a dark-colored honey that has a spicy-malt flavor and is packed with antioxidants, but you could substitute regular honey or pure maple syrup if you can't find it.
1 TBSP butter
2 apples, small dice
4 c. water
pinch of salt
2 c. old-fashioned oats
1/2 c. golden raisins
1 TBSP crystallized (or candied) ginger, small dice
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 c. milk
3 TBSP buckwheat honey
Heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the diced apple and cook until softened, about 7 minutes.
While the apples are cooking, bring the water and a pinch of salt to a boil in a separate sauce pan. Add the oats and cook for 5 minutes, or until oats are tender. Stir in the apples, raisins, crystallized ginger, cinnamon, a few grates of fresh nutmeg and the milk. Simmer for another minute. Stir in the buckwheat honey and season to taste.