Oatmeal topped with a pineapple compote, toasted coconut, and almond slices. Piña colada oatmeal is my latest attempt at sprucing up my oatmeal breakfast routine. I’ve never been a big fan of oatmeal, in fact, I’ve deftly avoided the slimy sludge for the better part of my adult life. I’ve always had a hard time with oatmeal’s sloppily disheartening texture and its underlying bitterness. Yes, this stuff is supposed to be good for you, but if you have to drown it in cream and sugar to make it palatable, what’s the point? At that point, I may as well be reaching for the fruit loops.
In my latest bid, at eating my way into a healthier life, I decided to give oatmeal another try. What followed was a week filled with oatmeal related kitchen disasters. I have cooked oatmeal before in large batches, in commercial kitchens, but the single serving size eluded me. I tried to cut corners by using the microwave – big mistake. I ended up using the stovetop – which resulted in burnt milk everywhere – twice. I’ll admit, it took me the better part of a week to master cooking oatmeal, and to embrace the hefty dose of patience and watchfulness required in preparing this seemingly simple meal. FYI instant oats only have a small fraction of the nutrition found in steal-cut and old fashioned oats, so if you’re going to eat oatmeal, you may as well take the few extra minutes to cook the good stuff. It really doesn’t take that long. I’m just a dunce, or at least, easily distracted by the puzzle on the dinning table.
Pineapple and Coconut Compote
Fruit compotes are looser versions of fruit jams. They tend towards larger chunks of fruit and smaller amounts of sugar or sweetener since you don’t need to worry about getting the pectin to fully activate and gel the jam together. I added very little sweetener to the recipe below since I was looking to take the more health conscious approach, but feel free to put your own spin on it. Another fun addition, might be a shot or two of rum to really bring out the piña colada side of things. I’ve done this in the past when making piña colada jam, and it’s been well received. I used frozen fruit for this recipe seeing as it’s the depths of Winter and good fresh coconuts and pineapples are hard to come by. It also happens to be less overall work.
In a sauce pan combine:
- 8 oz of Pineapple
- 8 oz of Coconut Meat
- 1/4 cup Water
- 2 tbsp Maple Syrup
Cook these together until the fruit has cooked through and about two-thirds of the water has been cooked off.
Piña Colada Oatmeal
- Oatmeal (per-serving)
- 2/3 cup Milk
- 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Oats
- pinch of Salt
- Pineapple and Coconut Compote
- toasted grated Coconut
- toasted Almond slices
- Toast your coconut and almonds in a hot oven. I toast a good sized batch of them (~ 1 cup of coconut and 1/2 cup of almonds), store them in an airtight container once they have cooled, and then continue to use them throughout the week.
- Pour your milk into a small sauce pan.
- Bring your milk to a slight simmer.
- Add in the oats and salt.
- Continue to simmer the milk and oats for 5 minutes.
- Pour your hot oatmeal into a bowl, and garnish with the compote, toasted coconut, and almonds.