Scottish Oats with Jam & Cream
This isn’t so much a recipe as a suggestion. Eat more oats! Oatmeal has always been one of my favorites — whether served in a bowl or used as an ingredient. Recently, though, I’ve discovered an alternative to the old-fashioned rolled oats we typically use to make oatmeal — a recommendation from across the pond!
My first venture into alternative oatmeal territory involved Irish steel-cut oats. Steel cut oats are made from whole oat groats that are chopped into several pieces. They have a tougher texture and chewier bite. Our bodies like steel-cut oats better than the Americanized version. This form of oats takes more energy and time to break down, thus preventing sugar spikes. It also takes longer to prepare than our fast-food-style quick oats.
Scottish oatmeal is a new staple in our home. In fact, nearly every morning since our trip to a Scottish Inn (more on that later!), I’ve been preparing small servings for breakfast. Scottish oatmeal is just that — an oat meal. The oats are ground on a stone mill from whole oat groats. Totes magoats! The result is a thicker, creamier oatmeal that’s truly delightful served with a hint of maple syrup or jam, dried fruit or nuts, and a drizzle of heavy cream.
One other note about a daily serving of oatmeal: it’s good for you! Because of the high fiber content in oats, they are known to remove cholesterol and provide cardiovascular protection. A Tufts University study published in The Journal of Nutrition found that antioxidant compounds unique to oats, called avenanthramides, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. So not only do oats keep things um … regular … they’re also great for your heart. See. Goldilocks knew what she was doing when she helped herself to the porridge!
Two men (one being Dr. Samuel Johnson, British literary expert, and the other James Boswell, Scottish biographer and diarist) were discussing Boswell’s daily adherence to eating oats for breakfast:
Johnson said, “In England we wouldn’t think of eating oats! We only feed them to horses.”
To which Boswell replied,
“Well perhaps that’s why in England you have better horses, and in Scotland we have better men.”