Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tweak Me

I think I am onto a very yummy oatmeal recipe, but I need some help tweaking the recipe. My idea was to make pumpkin cheesecake oatmeal using pumpkin, ricotta, and oats. The consistency and texture came out perfect-- just like cheesecake, but the flavor isn't quite right.


Any ideas on how to make my pumpkin cheesecake oatmeal more delicious? I was thinking maybe adding some pumpkin pie spice?

Pumpkin Cheesecake Oatmeal
First draft

1/2 cup dry oats
1/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup low-fat ricotta
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp brown sugar
shake of cinnamon and nutmeg

Mix well, cook in microwave for 2 minutes.


Mr. Mal was up early to go into school this morning, so we enjoyed our iced coffees together on the couch while watching an Olympics recap on TV. It was nice having some relaxing AM time with my husband! :)


Question of the Day

What is your greatest fitness accomplishment?

Me: I have walked 3 marathons, and plan to walk another this coming September. I walk with a team to raise money for the Jimmy Fund every year. If you're feeling generous (shameless plug), please feel free to make a donation to my team!

33 Comments:

Caitlin said...

my greatest fitness accomplishment was actually just getting started! i think it takes a lot of effort to establish and maintain an exercise routinue, so even though i've ran 10k's and 15k's, i still count getting off my lazy butt and taking those first steps as my biggest accomplishment yet!

your oatmeal looks delicious!

Anonymous said...

Maybe if you try adding pumpkin pie spice and using cream cheese instead of ricotta you would get more of a cheesecake flavor

Anonymous said...

I actually had something very similar for breakfast. I used 1/2 cup oats, 1 cup water, 1/2 cup pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla, and a squirt of maple syrup. Finished off with 1/2 cup of Kashi Go Lean Crunch and 1/8 cup of chopped walnuts/vanilla bean almonds. Go easy with the pumpkin pie spice though--the flavor was a little strong on mine!

Em said...

i think you might need something to sweeten the oats?
my greatest fitness accomplishment..hmm. it would probably be training myself to do difficult things like running 4 miles w/out stopping, holding my breath for 3 minutes (i'm a synchronized swimmer) or getting thrown off a lift(again, synchro).
so here's my shameless plug, watch synchronized swimming on the olympics, it's like gymnastics in the water:]

sportsnutritionliving said...

I think the cream cheese would def make a difference! and maybe some nutmeg....

My greatest fitness accomplishment is runnign the boston marathon

UVAJess said...

Getting up the nerve to run a 10K and then finishing 1st in my age group and 5th overall for women!

VeggieGirl said...

I vote for adding some pure maple syrup to your pumpkin cheesecake oatmeal; or how about some DATES?!?!?!?! :0D

My greatest fitness accomplishment is becoming a full-time dancer - I will be dancing over 100 different dances in my upcoming competition, and I'm totally psyched :0)

c said...

I would say my great accomplishment is doing any exercise at all, these days. In the past I ran an 8k and i was pretty excited about that.

Meg said...

I think adding a little cream cheese in addtion to the ricotta will give you the right combination.

Anonymous said...

I make a similar dish, but use cottage cheese instead...and I use some maple syrup.

Laura said...

Hey Tina,
I have a non food related question. I want to visit Boston Labor Day weekend. Which are do you suggest. I want to be able to walk most places and leave my car parked. I would also prefer to stay at a Marriott since I have points for a free room. Thanks for your help!!

sbkat said...

Great idea for the pumpkin 'cheesecake' oatmeal. The only thing that seems to be missing is the 'crust' flavor. After the oatmeal has cooked, I would crumble a graham cracker over the top and mix it in.

I'm with Caitlin as far as fitness accomplishments go. Just getting started and moving is the hard part. Once you get going and it becomes a life long habit, it's nearly painful NOT to exercise regularly!

Sarah said...

wow, walking a marathon sounds insane. I'd think it might actually be harder than running one just because it must take so long! How long did it take you to finish? I hope you stopped for lots of yummy snacks along the way : )

I'd say my biggest accomplishment is my attitude change toward exercise. I used to workout solely to burn calories and lose weight which was no fun at all. I dreaded my workouts and felt really guilty when I missed one. Now I exercise because I genuinely enjoy it. I do things I like (such as yoga and running) and don't focus at all on the calories. I do it for the health benefits and how great it makes me feel mentally and physically.

Tina said...

Laura,

Good question! There are 2 really nice Marriotts in Boston-- one in Copley Square and one in Cambridge near MIT and Harvard. Both locations have you close to all of the "action," but the Copley Marriott is practically in the heart of the city. As for parking, good luck! j/k :) Typically, you can't leave your car on the street for long periods of time because of meters, resident areas, street cleaning, etc., but I bet the Marriott offers some sort of parking option for its guests. There are also various garages in Boston and Cambridge where you can park your car all day for a fee.

Hope you enjoy your trip here! Boston is an amazing city, especially in September! :)

runroamrecycle said...

definitely try the pumpkin pie spice.. and when I do pumpkin oats (or shakes.. or whatever) I also add a little splash of vanilla syrup (like the kind they use for coffee drinks)!

Hmm.. greatest fitness accomplishment. I've done the marathons and races, and I've taken my age group many times, but I think the greatest accomplishment I've made is realizing I don't need to be fast all the time. I've started running with my mom on recovery days because it's a great way to spend time together and I think she really appreciates it. It used to be so hard for me mentally because I'd think other people would think I was really that slow, but now it's just like - who cares!

Plus, unless they're from out of town, chances are they see me cruisin' down at the lake all the time anyways.. =]

Kath said...

I suggest banana to permeate sweetness throughout!! And cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice for sure. And perhaps a drizzle of maple. Or topped with some granola plank or almonds for chew. Raisins would add sweetness too. or the new vanilla bean paste for more flavor!! Or all of the above ;)

My greatest fitness accomplishment was the 5K I ran in April 2006. I ran one in high school at about 28 minutes so my goal was just to run less than that. I hadn't trained at ALL and came in at 24:27 (I forget the exact seconds). It was an awesome moment when I crossed the finish line :)

Tina said...

Sarah,

The marathon takes ALL day-- a good 8 or 9 hours with plenty of breaks and snacks in between. We also stop and sit for about 30 minutes to eat lunch at the half-way point. It's a GREAT day! :)

All,

THANK YOU for your suggestions! I am going to try the recipe again tomorrow morning!

James said...

Add in some whipped cottage cheese or maybe an original laughing cow? Or even some FF or LF Creamed cheese? You could thin it out with a little milk or water?

SO MANY POSSIBILITIES! :)

James said...

OH OH OHHHH!!! Mix some SF maple syrup with some Neufchatel or something and pop it into the micro and then pour it on top of your oats??? Or even some whipped cottage cheese + some greek yogurt (TJ's makes the BEST and it's SUPER cheap compared to Fage, Oikos, etc. See my bloggy for review if need be!) and melt it with some agave or SF maple, or whatevs! Like an icing (oooooooOOoooOOooOooOOOooo) ;)

For me, any excuse to use an icing = G.O.L.D.

James said...

OMG, this cracks me up... SO this is JULZ, NOT JAMES (I'm on my brother's computer... hahaha bc mine broke... Think Puppy jumping up on desk, knocking it onto the floor... :) )

WHOOPS!

Sammie said...

I think you have many options to test out for your recipe, good luck.
My greatest fitness accomplishment would have to be the time I road my bike form my door step (Bellingham, MA) to the end of the Cape Cod Canal. A total of 104 miles all in one day.

evan Barbour said...

don't use pumpkin pie spice! it's usually a rip off made with strange fillers. perhaps cinnamon and cloves- i make pumpkin oatmeal all the times and the cloves really make it special.

also, fresh grated ginger! the two (cloves and fresh ginger) really make for great flavors...

Tami said...

my greatest accomplishment, last may i started to take my health and execrise seriously, since then i struggled through 5ks and now i ease through half marathons and i am thinking of a full marathon sometime next year.

mags said...

i would have to say my greatest fitness accomplishment was running the chicago marathon last year in extreme heat and humidity. it was the hardest 4 hours of my life!

Sarah said...

hmm
Pumpkin Pie Spice is a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice. I'm not a huge fan of it because you can't tweak the amounts of each yourself. My suggestion is increase the cinnamon a bit and add ginger and allspice as well. The combination will create more of a pumpkin pie flavor, with a pinch of salt to bring it out.

As a topping, perhaps a bit of crumbled graham cracker. I'm not used to that in a pumpkin crust but some might be, and the graham flavor might be a nice compliment and add a touch of sweetness.

Natashya said...

Hmmm, maybe just a little squeeze of lemon to wake up the pumpkin? Not enough that you taste lemon though. Maybe the tiniest pinch of salt.
I like the pug shot below, is that your pup?

Erica said...

Hey- I wanted to make sure you saw the daily puppy today because its your favorite...the pug:
http://www.dailypuppy.com/

cowboysandcubicles said...

A banana would be a great way to add bulk and sweetness, but I think raisins and a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds would be just as delicious.

My greatest fitness accomplishment would definitely be back when I rowed in my first regatta in high school. We came in fourth, but it was still an amazing feeling and one that I got to share with my seven teammates and our cox.

Melanie said...

My greatest fitness accomplishment was starting to run after losing 65 lbs and then finishing the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile in April 2005 in Washington, DC. Since then I've run many different races and am considering training this fall for my first half marathon.

Oatmeal looks yummy! :-)

Tracey said...

How about some graham cracker crumbs sprinkled on top? That would add sweetness, crunch and chew - plus, I think the best part of the cheesecake is the graham cracker crust! Love your blog!

Anonymous said...

Riding in my first century ride, hiking Half Dome, and soon to hike part of the John Muir Trail as well as Mt. Whitney

Lori said...

Thanks for the oatmeal recipe. That sounds great! I'd add some pumpkin pie spice, extra cinnamon and maybe a little honey or brown sugar.

sweetsandsweats said...

My greatest fitness achievement would be a half ironman. Which I am still dumbfounded that I even got talked into signing up for, much less completed. I like to think it was because I had two very attractive guys as my training partners. Nothing motivates you out of bed early in the morning as some sexy six packs!

I have always said I wanted to do a whole ironman but I simply do not think my body would allow for that after the knee injury, and in all honesty, I don’t know if I have the effort to train that hard/much anymore. I like my time with the husband too much!

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