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Monday, October 18, 2010

Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal

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Do you ever get nervous cooking for people? I always have a little bit of apprehension when I'm making something that will be eaten by someone other than Ryan or me. Of course, most people I know are probably too nice to tell me if something I make is terrible (save for my sister Julia, love you Ju!), but I always worry that secretly people might be eating and thinking "ew". As I become more confident in my baking and cooking, the nervousness has lessened. Except when it comes to making something for my mom. If you know my mom, you know she's kind of a Martha Stewart, only prettier, nicer, and, in my own humble opinion, even more talented. While some of her skills I will never possess (the talent for perfect accessorizing or the art of decorating a room, for example), I at least have a shot in the kitchen!

Now, at twenty-four years old, I truly appreciate the time she put into cooking meals for our family of six. I sometimes struggle to get food on the table for two of us, I can't imagine adding a bunch of picky kids to the mix! To thank her, I enjoy the chance to cook for her from time to time, even if it does make me a little nervous. When I was home recently for the marathon, I volunteered to make breakfast for the family. The dish of choice? Pumpkin baked oatmeal! I figured this was safe, given our family's love for amish baked oatmeal and I was eager to adapt the recipe I had seen on The Ungourmet.
We all loved this--my mom included. Both of us agreed that some crunch in the oatmeal would've put it over the top; I recommend adding at least half a cup of chopped pecans to the oatmeal mixture before baking! Otherwise, it was the perfect breakfast for a crisp Fall morning!

One Year Ago: Amish Baked Oatmeal (too funny, I guess this is the time of year for baked oatmeal!)

Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal
adapted from The Ungourmet

-3 cups old-fashioned oats
-1 cup maple syrup
-2 tsp cinnamon
-1 tsp nutmeg
-1/2 tsp ground ginger
-1/2 tsp salt
-2 tsp baking powder
-1/4 cup dried cranberries
-1 cup diced apple
-1 1/2 cups milk
-1 cup pumpkin puree
-4 tbsp melted butter
-2 large eggs

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a round casserole dish.
2. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients (cranberry and apple too!). In a separate bowl, mix milk, butter, pumpkin, maple syrup, and eggs. Whisk until smooth and add to dry ingredients, stirring to combine.
3. Pour pumpkin mixture into greased dish. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
4. Serve immediately, with warmed milk and brown sugar for topping!

This is linked to Eat at Home.