Many moons ago, I visited a fabulous little coffee shop in Bellefonte, PA called Cool Beans, and discovered what was quite possibly the best breakfast I’ve ever had. Sitting on the counter was a 9×13 pan of their baked oatmeal. Seeing as I was raised in Chicago, the odds of my having encountered a Pennsylvania Dutch recipe in the past were slim to none. So I took the plunge and was amazed at the next series of questions. Did I want it warmed up? Did I want it in a mug? Did I want it with steamed milk? I got really excited…
The oatmeal obviously did not disappoint, and I have been searching for a recipe to do it justice ever since then. Here is my tweaked and retreated recipe, which can be altered very easily to suit you and your family’s tastes. Note: this recipe is also gluten free, though you may want to get steel cut oats to really avoid any gluten traces. I also make this with our farm fresh eggs and real vanilla – makes a huge difference. My Outdoorsman can’t get enough of this on those chilly winter mornings!
Sarlabeth’s Baked Oatmeal
Adapted from original recipe by Marge Weaver, 1946
3 c rolled oats
1 c brown sugar, unpacked
2 t ground cinnamon
2 t baking soda
1 t salt
1 c milk
1/2 c melted butter
2 t vanilla
1 c raisins
Chopped walnuts to taste
Options: 1-2 chopped apples to replace raisins and walnuts, 3/4 c cranberries or any other berry – strawberries, blueberries, black raspberries
Mix oats, sugar, cinnamon, soda, and salt. Beat in milk, eggs, melted butter and vanilla. Stir in fruit and nuts. Spread in a 9×13 baking dish.
Bake 40 minutes. Serve with warm or steamed milk. Perfect with a cup of coffee!