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Feats with Oatmeal

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For a long, long time oatmeal was the main food of the Scottish peasant, and in many areas it still is. We should thank the Scots who brought it with them when they came to Canada from their hilly countryside.
Scottish, Irish or Canadian oatmeal, rolled or flaked oats, groats or grits, and quick, or no-cooking oatmeal are all oats. But there are important differences between them.
Oatmeal is the husked meal of the oats, ground and kiln-dried. The most superior type is the Scottish, followed by the Irish. To sample these, just ask for imported oats at specialty shops.
Scottish and Irish oatmeal need careful cooking in order to break down the starch cells and, of course, the larger and coarser the meal, the longer the boiling required.
Rolled or flaked oats are oats that, once dried, husked and softened by steam, are rolled flat and carefully dried by a special process.
Quick, or no-cooking types of oatmeal are mill-processed and produced from the rolled or flaked oats.
Groats or grits are the seeds or kernels of oats, either left whole or cut in two or three pieces. If ground, they are referred to as prepared groats. The whole groats are used to make pilafs and casseroles. The cut types are chiefly used to make soup, or as a thickener for consomme.
Six Breakfast Oatmeals:
Oatmeal is still one of the world's best breakfasts. In order to get the full value out of your porridge, let the oatmeal soak in a glass or stainless steel pot overnight and cook it in the morning. To further enrich porridge, let it stand covered for 5 minutes before cooking.
There are six basic ways to cook oatmeal, each giving slightly different results. The following recipes require 1 1/2 cups rolled oats, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 3 cups water, and serve four. Quick or no-cooking oats may also be used, but for these, follow the directions on the box.
Quick Method: Bring water to a boil, add salt, then stir in oats. Cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Cold Water Method: Stir oats and salt into cold water, bring to a boil over medium heat and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Double Boiler Method: Stir oats and salt into boiling water in top of a double boiler over direct heat. Cook 2 minutes, then place over boiling water and cook 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Oven Method: Place oats in a casserole, then add boiling water. Cover and bake 25 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Night-Before Method: Stir oats and salt into boiling water in top of a double boiler over direct heat. Remove from heat, cover and let stand overnight. In the morning, place over boiling water and heat to serving temperature, stirring frequently.
Cooked-in-Milk Method: Follow any of the previous cooking methods, using 1 1/2 cups fresh milk and 1 1/2 cups water, or mixing 1/4 cup of instant skim milk powder with the oats.
Recipe by: The Canadiana Cookbook/Mme Jehane Benoit/1970 Posted to TNT - Prodigy's Recipe Exchange Newsletter by Bill & Leilani Devries <> on Aug 28, 1997