Saturday, November 19, 2011

Claymation takes patience. Improving your oatmeal does not.

With cinnamon, vanilla soymilk & walnuts.
By request, I here feature a venture into the world of The Dining Hall Gourmet (a.k.a. me). 

Yes, I use microwaves in the dining halls to steam my vegetables. If there are condiments provided (sunflower seeds, olive oil, vinegar, oregano, cranberries, lemons, etc. . . lots of things for me to play with), you can bet your tray that I'll be garnishing my meal with them! 

Though toast can also be a medium for my morning creativity, oatmeal is a beautifully blank slate. And sprinkling or smearing a few easy ingredients on top (especially tasty treats from the local co-op) takes little patience. 

Eating in dining halls robs me of the patience-building exercise of homemade cooking, which I return to this week (finally, since the times when I cannot cook are my sad times of the day). However, cooking takes much less patience (for me) than the art of claymation (which I have not explored but I take the behind-the-scenes features' word for it). 

Oatmeal kind of looks like clay, and oatmeal is an impressively health-laden breakfast that sticks to your ribs like clay. Thankfully oatmeal is not clay (though with McDonald's one can't be so sure: "even the oatmeal contains seven ingredients, including 'natural flavor'").

Oatmeal Gallery (gluten-free if gluten-free oats, vg)
Since I ate in the dining hall, I did not have to cook this oatmeal (and I like mine chewy, so I am looking forward to cooking my own soon!). Hence I do not have a special oatmeal-making technique to include of my own doing. . . so here is a link to simple oatmeal (and myriad other grain) preparation!

Uncinnamonyum! Oatmeal
Ingredients: cardamom, raw pumpkin seeds, banana slices.

Plumana Mannameal
Ingredients: sliced plum (yes, there were plums in the dining halls!), raw walnuts, raspberry jam, banana slices.

Choco-kiwi-cash Oatmeal
Ingredients: unsweetened cocoa powder, raw cashews, sliced kiwi (not from dining hall, sadly . . .).

Raisinnut Oatmeal
Ingredients: cinnamon, pink salt, raw hazelnuts, peanut butter, banana slices.


Peachy Pecan Pie Oatmeal
Ingredients: cinnamon, unsweetened coconut flakes, raw pecans, sliced peach (yes, from dining hall too!).


Ap-pear-ently Strawberried Oatmeal
Ingredients: apricot jam, freeze-dried strawberries, raw walnuts pieces, fresh pear chunks (yup, pears make a regular ap-pear-ence in the halls of dining).

"That Looks Practical" Oatmeal
Ingredients: cinnamon, cinnamon apple sauce, raw cocoa nibs, raw pumpkin seeds.

Another idea to try that was not pictured: a touch of pumpkin butter to make pumpkin puff oatmeal, as sold in Pumpkin Land!

The (Gluten-free) Dining Hall Gourmet 

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