Monday, March 26, 2012

Apple Streusel Oatmeal

Every morning I start the day with a fresh pressed glass of juice from my juicer.  It typically involves some mixture of apples, carrots, kale, spinach and oranges.  That gives me quite a bit of energy to get through my morning workout, and then I make my breakfast.  I almost always eat oatmeal for breakfast hooked up with bananas, raisins, walnuts and ground flax-seed toppings.  I keep it pretty simple and I love it.  Other days, if the mood strikes, I just have a slice of homemade toast with some all-natural peanut butter.  I don't experiment a whole lot when it comes to breakfast since I pretty much never get tired of my usual.  I'd like to branch out a bit more when it comes to the most important meal of the day though, just to see what else might tickle my fancy!

I was craving something sweet this morning (shocker!), so I decided to experiment with my oatmeal.  (I didn't want to get too crazy yet and try something completely new, ha!). I'm glad I did because it turned out to be a nice change from my usual oatmeal and it really hit the sweet spot.

Apple Streusel Oatmeal
(serves 2)
1 1/2 cups water (or other liquid of your choice)
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 apple, chopped into small chunks
1/2 tsp cinnamon
6 dates (with pits removed), soaked and blended in 1/4 cup water

Optional toppings
Handful of walnuts, chopped (or other nuts of choice)
1 tbsp ground flax seed

Soak dates in water for 10 minutes.  Drain and blend in food processor/blender with 1/4 cup water until a paste forms.  Set aside.

Bring water (or liquid of choice) to a boil and add oats and chopped apples. Return to a boil then lower heat to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, or until most of the water has been absorbed. Remove from heat, add cinnamon and date paste. Mix until well combined.  

This really is quite the healthy breakfast packed with lots of extra nutrients from the added apple and dates. I didn't eat any of the optional toppings today, but I suspect that adding some nuts, especially walnuts, would make this even more yummy.   I plan to try that out next time.  Also, ground flax seed is very good for you, so it's never a bad idea to try and sneak some tablespoons into whatever you're eating.   It's pretty high in protein, Omega-3 Fats and Fiber.  I add it to my usual oatmeal and it doesn't change the taste at all.  

I'm off to start my day now!  Enjoy yours!  :)

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