What’s for breakfast? Baked blueberry and banana oatmeal!

BlueberryBakedOatmeal

After seeing SEVERAL food bloggers talk about how wonderful baked oatmeal is AND after seeing the post from Why Not Give It  A Try, I decided to try this.  I’ve got to admit that I wasn’t in a hurry to try it because oatmeal is just not one of my FAVORITE foods to eat.  BUT from everything I’ve been reading, even if you don’t care for the texture of oatmeal, you’ll probably like this one.  OH!  I’m SO glad I made this.  It’s delicious and it’s one of those things you make ahead of time for the upcoming week.  It will be breakfast OR dessert for a few days this upcoming week.

Baked Blueberry Banana Oatmeal

ingredients:

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, divided
1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup maple syrup (I used sugar free)
1 cup milk (I used skim)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2-3 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
1 cup blueberries or raspberries, fresh or frozen, divided

directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 375F.

2. Lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish. In a medium bowl, mix the oats, half of the walnuts, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Stir to combine. In a liquid measuring cup, combine the syrup, milk, egg, butter, and vanilla.

3. Spread the sliced bananas in a single layer over the bottom of the baking dish. Top with half of the berries. Sprinkle the dry oat mixture over the fruit in an even layer. Pour the liquid ingredients evenly over the oats.

4. Sprinkle the remaining nuts and berries over the top. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the top is browned and the oats have set. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Adapted from Sohowsittaste

Espresso in a coffee pot… Confessions of a caffeine addict


Sadly, today, there’s not going to be enough caffeine in the world to keep me awake!  I have issues with sleeping at night the way a NORMAL person would sleep.  When my head hits the pillow, a slow motion picture movie starts playing in my brain… and then it speeds up and speeds up and speeds up… with every little thing that I might need to get accomplished for the next day or the next week or the next year and then finally, the rest of my life

Caramel Frappuccino® Blended Coffee

 

I spend at least $30 a week on these!  I’d spend more if we actually had a Starbucks close. Alas, it takes me about a half an hour to get there 😦  

 

I’ve been trying different recipes I found online (pinterest) and I’ve been SO disappointed!  I couldn’t reproduce the rich, frothy deliciousness in my blender!  NOW, I know that I really needed to purchase the blended ice coffee mix, like this one.  Without the mix… NOTHING goes right for iced coffee!

Which brings me to my NEXT problem… I ALWAYS, always order my iced coffee with a double shot of espresso!  I rarely ever GET a double shot of espresso.  As in, they charge me for it but I can really taste that I’m not actually receiving a double shot (I call it my double shot of CRACK).  Do you know that they charge you $1.50 extra for a double shot of crack?  So to NOT get my fix just pisses me right the he## off!  lol

 

Product Details

Oh, how I want one of these!  I would save SO much money if I had one but I just can’t justify spending $600 PLUS shipping when my daughter is working SO hard to raise enough money to go on a mission trip to Nicaragua this summer?  I just can’t do it 😦  Besides, we actually own an expensive Bunn.  Product Details

Solution?  I went online and ordered 3 bags of Starbucks espresso from Amazon.  I also ordered a bag of ice coffee blend.  I found out that you can buy stove top espresso brewers, called Moka Express. They’re inexpensive AND they have good reviews!

 

I don’t think I’m going to do that though.  I’ll wait until I can afford the real deal 🙂  Instead, I’m going to do the best I can to produce the closest thing to espreso that our little Bunn can make!  I’ve done some research this morning and here’s what I came up with:

Instructions for coffee maker espresso

 

    • Choose a dark roasted or espresso roasted coffee bean and then grind your beans as finely as possible. While many coffee grinders have an espresso option, if there is a finer option, don’t necessarily go for the espresso grind. Rather, to make your espresso with a drip coffee maker, you will need to select the finest grind possible.

       

    • Double your coffee filter so that the water moves slowly through the grounds. If you have a built-in metal cone filter in your coffee machine, add a paper filter for good measure.

       

       

    • Measure your coffee grounds, using approximately  1 1/2 TBSP of finely ground coffee for every 1/4 cup of espresso. However, remember that because the water will move more slowly through the grounds, you should not attempt to make more espresso than your your coffee maker’s cone or filter holder can hold at one time to prevent overflow.

       

       

    • Place your coffee grounds into the filter and pack down slightly with the back of a spoon (it’s called tamping). Pour the desired amount of water into your machine, and allow it to brew your hot cup of espresso. For best results, use pure, filtered water.

So to recap:  1 1/2 TBSP for each 1/4 cup of espresso.
For your further reading enjoyment….  article very correctly states that “espresso is not just a cup of coffee, it’s a state of mind”.  Espresso is also compared to Ambrosia, THE drink of the gods!  lol  I’ll have to agree with that but only IF it has lots of sugar and cream!