There are two import foods I can’t live without: peanut butter and oats.
Let’s talk about oats–I’ll get to the peanut butter later. Sometimes I buy Quaker Oats in bulk from online import stores; sometimes I buy Alishan or Alara jumbo organic oats at Diamond in Omicho Market; sometimes I get Nisshoku oatmeal from the regular supermarket, though I prefer bigger oats. At any rate, there’s a constant supply of oatmeal in my kitchen, which keeps my cereal-obsessed American self quite happy, especially in the dead of the Hokuriku winter when the morning oatmeal warms the kitchen and dining room.
But what about in summer?
That’s where overnight oats come in! It’s like making cold cereal — requires no heat and barely any effort, just 5 minutes before you go to bed!
Note: This section has been edited. It’s come to my attention that the OP of the recipe’s blog has a lot of problematic elements that I was unable to see as a new reader and which have escalated severely since I posted this. I grew more and more uncomfortable with the blog during 2012 and unfollowed around the same time a friend sent me smugnom. The recipe is still good, but I can’t believe I followed the blog for several months before I saw it. My getting weirded out by faux-feminist bloggers is also the inspiration for this post.
I remember when I first encountered the concept (via Homemade Adventure‘s awesome oatmeal series): using nut-butter jars to make the oatmeal so that last little bit at the end that’s impossible to get with the knife or spoon, and I was immediately incensed. How dare people have fancy nut butter when I have to pay through the nose for imported stuff and can’t find enough peanuts in one place to grind my own?! (I told you I was serious about my peanut butter.) Oh, it must be so nice having access to organic sunflower butter and chia seeds! HOW FANCY.
Enough about me and my nut-butter angst! On to the recipe!
An easy trick to remember is that you want a 1:1:1 ratio of oats, milk, and yogurt, though you can certainly alter this to suit the size of oats, the consistency of the yogurt, or the desired final consistency of the oatmeal. Stay cool!
Adapted from “Overnight Oats”
50 g (1/3 US cup) oats (ôtomiru, オートミール)
80 mL (1/3 cup) yogurt (yôguruto, ヨーグルト)
80 mL (1/3 cup) milk or soy milk (gyûnyû, 牛乳) or (tônyû, 豆乳)
A jar with lid, tupperware, or leftover nut-butter/jam/yogurt jar (about 300-500 mL)
1. Mix oats, yogurt, and milk together in the container.
2. Add in any mix-ins (see below).
3. Store in refrigerator overnight.
4. Serve in jar; if making multiple servings, dish out into bowls.
- Fresh fruit – add while mixing or before serving
- Frozen fruit – add while mixing
- Extracts- a few shakes of vanilla, almond, or coconut extract
- Nuts – add before serving
- Dried fruit – add before serving
- Nut butter – use a nearly-empty peanut-butter jar or add a dollop of nut butter to the top
- Jam or compote – ditto
- Sweeteners – if you like your oatmeal sweetened (I don’t), add a little honey, sugar, or maple syrup
- Spices – try cinnamon, ginger, or nutmeg
- Flavored/non-dairy milk: try soy milk, flavored soy milk, almond milk, or coconut milk
- Persimmons (either hachiya or fuyu) with cinnamon and walnuts
- Diced apples and cinnamon with peanut butter or walnuts
- Bananas and whole peanuts
- Sauteed bananas, coconut milk, coconut extract, and cinnamon (also good on hot oatmeal)
- Fresh cherries and almonds