I had heard the term – in fact, I’d even eaten ‘steel cut oatmeal. I just had no idea what made it different from other oatmeal.
The stuff that I was raised on was called rolled oats. It was essentially crushed whole grain. It was healthy and cooked relatively fast.
I had heard people rave about ‘steel cut’ like it was some form of superior oatmeal. Claims ranged from health benefits to taste. I was, more than anything, simply curious about it.
Steel cut Oatmeal ultimately looks like small pieces of grain – which it is. Instead of crushing the grain flat, the rice-like pieces of oats are coarsely chopped 2-3 times each. This leads to a thicker dried grain which means it takes longer to cook. They also need more water as you’re essentially hydrating the grain with the liquid and a bigger grain needs more water than a smaller one for this purpose.
Our results have been fantastic (we’ve made this several times since). Creamy with a subtle texture and just all around fabulous. This will be my prefered oatmeal of choice for years to come:
Here’s how to cook steel cut oats:
- measure 1 cup of oats and combine with 4 cups of water (you can start with 3 cups of water and add a cup of milk later but they are plenty creamy on their own)
- We sometimes add about a tablespoon of vanilla at this point.
- Bring the pot to a steady boil, stirring frequently (just enough so things don’t stick). Boil like this for about 5 minutes (if you do this for less than that time, the next part will take longer but will produce creamier results)
- Reduce heat to a simmer. Let it cook like this for about 30 minutes, stirring every few minutes. You may find that things start to get stuck to the bottom of the pot – in many cases, things will start to loosen toward the end (or stir more frequently)
Serve with toppings – our favorites include raisins, nuts, maple syrup and a bit of brown sugar. We brullee’d the top of this one with brown sugar based on an article I can no longer find (to share) but I think white sugar would have been a better choice for this purpose and we’ll just simply skip it next time. However, the article we had found did look good.
Any other fave hints or toppings out there?