After a couple breakfast ideas fell through, I hit upon making chai infused baked oatmeal. It was sooo good! Now I want to eat it everyday. Luckily, after making a batch I can at least eat it for a few days at a time since the leftovers reheat well. The oatmeal is adapted from Heidi Swanson's baked oatmeal recipe (of course!). —fiveandspice
Chai baked oatmeal
2 1/2 cups
milk - I prefer whole milk (nondairy substitutes work as well)
Heat your oven to 350F and butter a 9X13" (or similarly sized) baking dish. Combine the milk and the chai in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and allow to steep, covered, for 5 minutes. Strain into a large mixing bowl.
In another bowl combine the oats, salt, baking powder, and pecans (if using).
Whisk the eggs, maple syrup, and vanilla into the spiced milk. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together then scrape into the prepared baking dish. Bake until golden and set, about 40-45 minutes.
When the oatmeal is done, drizzle it with the melted butter and serve with the maple pears (it would also be good with a variety of other fruits or berries). It also keeps well and reheats nicely for a few days.
Core the pears and thinly slice them. Heat the butter in a large frying pan over medium heat and when it's foaming, stir in the pears.
Saute the pear slices until they are starting to soften, 3-5 minutes, then add the maple syrup, stir and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring to coat the pears. Serve warm atop the baked oatmeal.
I like to say I'm a lazy iron chef (I just cook with what I have around), renegade nutritionist, food policy wonk, and inveterate butter and cream enthusiast! My husband and I own a craft distillery in Northern Minnesota called Vikre Distillery (www.vikredistillery.com), where I claimed the title, "arbiter of taste." I also have a doctorate in food policy, for which I studied the changes in diet and health of new immigrants after they come to the United States. I myself am a Norwegian-American dual citizen. So I have a lot of Scandinavian pride, which especially shines through in my cooking on special holidays. Beyond loving all facets of food, I'm a Renaissance woman (translation: bad at focusing), dabbling in a variety of artistic and scientific endeavors.