I was up in the Northeastern region of Thailand last week for work. It was a fantastic trip. As is true most everywhere, things are so very different when you leave a big city. In rural areas, people know one another and recognize a visitor. People take time just to sit and talk – they move more slowly and seem to enjoy simple things more deeply. While up North I had the chance to visit with local people and witness the amazing hand-made crafts that are often sold in pristine, fancy stores here in Bangkok.
As I love to do when visiting any new place, I woke up early one morning and went to see the outdoor market. I followed the monks carrying bowls in which they collect offerings of food. (I could spot their orange robes from the window of my room in the hotel.) This is a surefire way to find a market first thing in the morning in Thailand. Follow the monks.
The outdoor market in Khon Kaen was a long stretch of road and several bustling alleys that were full of people selling and buying bright, fragrant produce and meat.
I thought these carts, pulled by men on bikes, were far more charming than the noisy motor-propelled tuk-tuks of Bangkok.
The trip was short, and I was back to busy Bangkok in time for the weekend. Unfortunately, I picked up a bit of a bug on the trip, and I have been recovering these past few days. It has left me craving simple, comforting foods, and made me appreciate that we had a quiet weekend to relax, watch movies, and enjoy the aroma of cinnamon and honey-laced oatmeal baking away in the oven.
Baked oatmeal is a wonderful thing. The oatmeal cooks up light and fluffy. As it bakes it sends of the distinctive smell of blueberry cobbler and the flavor, slightly sweet and with the richness of pecans, is somehow more profound than in a regular old bowl of oatmeal.
In the past I have made this in an 8×8 pan but since seeing them baked in petite little jelly jars over at Sprouted Kitchen, this is my new favorite method.
I popped the tops on the jars and put them in the fridge for breakfast later this week.
Except for this one. This one was calling my name.
- 1 and ½ cup rolled oats (not instant)
- ½ cup toasted pecans (roughly chopped)
- 1 and ½ cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1 and ½ cup apple juice (milk works great as a substitute)
- 1 large egg (lightly beaten)
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl combine the oatmeal, pecans, and blueberries. In a seperate bowl, whisk together the apple juice, egg, honey, cinnamon, and salt until well combined.
- Fill six small oven-safe containers (or an 8x8 baking dish) evenly with the oatmeal mixture. Pour the liquid evenly over the oats in each of the containers.
- Place the containers on a baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the blueberries are bubbly and the oats are crisp and golden.
- Allow the oatmeal to cool slightly and serve warm.