March 3, 2011 at 8:30 a.m.

A good for you 'wonder food'

A good for you 'wonder food'
A good for you 'wonder food'

A bowl of warm oatmeal for breakfast, especially in the winter, tastes really good doesn't it, unless you don't care for oatmeal, and we do like it. It warms the tummy, but can burn the tongue if it's too hot.

In 1908, Quaker Oats was the first company to have a cookie recipe appear on a cereal package. Thus the recipe was named the "original" oatmeal cookie recipe. I never know if I should say oat cookies or oatmeal cookies. H-m-m-m. If you put oatmeal in the cookies you'd mess up the batch. Fee-da! Well, I say oatmeal cookies, cake, or whatever if the recipe calls for oats. So, we're baking with oatmeal (oats) today. Also, old-fashioned or quick oats are interchangeable with each other in most recipes.

In the 1930's this cookie recipe was originally called Jake and Lena cookies, but was changed to Poor Man's cookies because they didn't have eggs, milk or nuts in them. Regardless of the name, the cookies are rich in taste. Sounds like a depression era cookie, doesn't it.

POOR MAN'S COOKIES

2 c. old-fashioned or quick oats

1 c. packed brown sugar

1/2 c. white sugar

1 c. flour

1/8 t. salt

1 t. baking soda

1/4 c. hot water

1/2 c. margarine, melted and cooled

1 t. vanilla

In a bowl combine first 5 ingredients. In a small container combine baking soda and hot water; stir into oat mixture along with margarine and vanilla; mix well. Roll into walnut-size balls. Put cookies on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper or spray sheets with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Don't over bake unless you like a crisp cookie. Remove from oven and cool for 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack. Makes 3-1/2 dozen. Nutritional info: 2 cookies: 135 calories, Saturated fat: 1 gr, cholesterol: 0 gr, sodium: 125 mg, carbs: 21 gm, protein: 2 mg.

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Oh, oh. Another recipe for the poor man. However, it does have eggs in it but no pecans!

POOR MAN'S PECAN PIE

3 eggs

1 c. sugar

1 c. old-fashioned or quick oats

3/4 c. dark corn syrup

1/2 c. flaked coconut

2 T. butter or margarine, melted

1 t. vanilla

1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell

Whipped topping, whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream, optional.

In a bowl, combine first 7 ingredients; mix well. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes; lower heat to 350 degrees. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. If necessary, cover edges of crust to prevent over-browning. Cool on wire rack. Garnish with topping if you wish.

Makes 6-8 servings.

Note: If you don't have dark corn syrup, put 1/4 c. molasses in a measuring cup and add clear corn syrup to make 1 cup. Also, I have an aluminum 1-inch wide ring to set on the edge of the pie to prevent over-browning. Works great.

+++++

I like this cake recipe, you don't have to frost it.

OATMEAL CHOCOLATE CHIP CAKE

1-3/4 c. boiling water

1 c. quick oats

1 c. packed brown sugar

1 c. white sugar

1/2 c. butter or margarine, softened

3 eggs

1-3/4 c. flour

1 t. baking soda

1 t. baking cocoa

1/8 t. salt

2 c. (12 oz pkg.) chocolate chips, divided

3/4 c. chopped walnuts

In a mixing bowl, pour water over oats. Let stand 10 minutes. Add sugars and butter, stirring until butter melts. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. In another bowl, using a wire whisk, combine flour, soda, cocoa and salt together. Add to batter. Stir in half of the chips. Turn into a greased 9x13-inch baking pan. Sprinkle top of cake with walnuts and rest of chips. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes, testing with toothpick.

Makes 12 servings.

Oats are a wonder food. If they were handing out medals for nutritional values, oats would win a lifetime-achievement award. High in soluble fiber, which can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and total blood cholesterol, as well as insoluble fiber, oats are low-fat, cholesterol free, low in sodium and popular with everyone from kids to seniors. I'm not so sure about the kid part. I preferred cream of wheat to oatmeal until I was married and found out it was one of the better things for me, besides being married!

TFD: One thing that all can have, though they possess nothing else, is hope.

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