My kiddos turned a year old this past week. It's been a whole year already. Then again, it feels like it's been about 20 years. I'll admit, the last few months have flown by. But the first eight? They seemed like an eternity.
(Mamas, if you find yourself wondering if your kid will ever leave your womb, hold their head up, sleep through the night or whatever other milestone you're waiting for, and you just can't listen to one. more. person. talk about how fast time if flying because for you time is plodding along at a glacial pace, know that I feel your pain. Feel free to skip reading the rest of this post and vent in the comments. Some days...and months...just drag.)
That being said, the last few months have sped by. Every day, my kiddos are starting to do something knew. They're almost walking (scary!) and mimicking us a lot more (even scarier!). They're wreaking havoc throughout the house, and you can't walk more than a few feet without stepping on a toy, squishy banana or highly crustified piece of mystery food. Please don't be scared away, though. If you want to come over, just give me a heads up so I have ample time to clean/remove/hide/decrustify the aforementioned hazards.
As the kids grow and the mess grows, I'm trying to keep up as best I can. I'm also trying to let some things go. My house is not as clean as it used to be, and that's OK (although I do have a limit to how many rotten bananas I can step on before I go completely bonkers). We have times on our calendar blocked off and denoted "do not plan anything" to allow margin in our schedule. I use my slow-cooker more, Google "make ahead recipes" regularly and always make sure to cook enough to have leftovers - especially when it comes to breakfast.
I've learned that for me, having breakfast leftovers is essential. A couple weeks ago, I made this Citrus Baked Oatmeal and ended up eating it all week long. I normally like variety in my meals, but sometimes, convenience wins the day. And convenience can still taste good...really good.
I used a mix or oranges for this recipe, mostly because I get inordinately excited whenever blood oranges are in season. You can use whatever fruit you like. You can also swap out the almond butter for another nut butter, change up the cinnamon for your favorite spice or add a splash of vanilla extract and a handful of chopped nuts. It's my favorite kind of recipe - one that's easily adaptable to fit your preferences or pantry stock and good enough to enjoy all week long.
Citrus Baked Oatmeal
Inspired by The Faux Martha
Yields about 6 servings
Cooking spray or butter for greasing the pan
3 cups rolled oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups milk
½ cup almond butter (or other nut butter)
½ cup honey
1 ½ cups peeled, chopped fresh citrus* (remove any seeds as you chop)
1-2 oranges for topping, peeled, seeds removed and sliced
Coarse sugar for sprinkling (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 3 quart (or similar capacity) baking dish and set aside.
In a medium bowl, add the rolled oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs slightly. Then whisk in the milk, almond butter and honey. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated.
Gently stir in the chopped citrus. Pour the batter into the prepared dish. Top with orange slices, and sprinkle everything with a bit of coarse sugar.
Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until batter is set and the top is slightly browned. Serve warm with cream, yogurt or your other favorite oatmeal toppings.
*I stuck to using a variety of oranges (such as naval and blood oranges) for this recipe. You can also try mixing in a little grapefruit, but you may want to serve with additional honey or coarse sugar to balance out the tartness.
Quick Tip: This is also a great meal to bring to a new mama, a sick family member or a friend who could use encouragement. Double the recipe and make two dishes - one for your family and one for someone else!