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Wintertime Spiced Oatmeal

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Steve and Susie Ellis’ Mirabelle Bed & Breakfast in Wooster balances traditional furniture with brightly colored walls. Guests who stay here are often treated to cream cheese-filled French toast or sweet-and-spicy bacon encrusted with brown sugar, chili powder and pecans. But for some, the B&B’s spiced oatmeal has become a repeat request.


Wintertime Spiced Oatmeal
| Serves 2

INGREDIENTS
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/4 cup raisins
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pure maple syrup (optional)

DIRECTIONS
In a saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. In a bowl, mix together dry ingredients, and then stir into boiling water. Cook uncovered for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until thickened. Remove from heat, then stir in the vanilla and divide into two bowls. Drizzle with warm maple syrup (optional). 

Additions: Add chopped bananas, chopped nuts, brown sugar or milk. For another wintry touch, grate orange zest on top. 

Bananas Foster Version: Warm 2 tablespoons of butter, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar and 1 to 2 tablespoons of Kahlua in a skillet, then stir in one sliced banana. Top bowls of oatmeal with caramelized bananas.