Refrigerator Oatmeal @wyldethyme.comGood Morning!  are you having one of those summer-time relax, hang-out, easy-into-your-day kind of mornings? yes, well even if you can say yes now, school is about to start and the relaxing mornings are gone!  I am trying to improve our family’s health and eating breakfast is a big part of getting a healthy start to your day.  Unfortunately for me I love sugar laden cereals (with marshmallows if you have to ask).  Not the best start, right?

I found this recipe for refrigerator oatmeal on pinterest.  I made them for a Mother’s Day brunch and they were a big hit.  It seems like they should be more complicated, but they are super simple to make.  You put equal part oatmeal and liquid together with a teaspoon of sweetener, let it sit over-night in the fridge and enjoy for breakfast!  I have joined my two original combinations into one great taste-filled favorite.

My original two were: brown sugar, chocolate chip; and honey almond cranberry coconut.  The combinations are endless.  Want to use agave? blue, pink or yellow sweetener? sure! mix in some nuts? peanut butter? almond butter? no problem.  want to use coconut milk? almond milk? soy? sure! and don’t get me started on the list of mix-ins!  I have developed my go-to hybrid of brown sugar, crasin, coconut, and chocolate chip.  For me this combination in perfect (not to mention I always have the ingredients on hand).

Oh, and the containers? any deli container will do (my local grocery store sells them to me for ten cents each with the covers, but I ordered a case through Ebay, for not very much money.  The pretty ones I saw on pinterest first made them up is mason jars, so lovely!

cover and refrigerate overnight up to three days

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Easiest Summer Dinner Ever: Shrimp BoilSeriously, is it hot by you? it’s been amazingly hot here in Connecticut.  Record setting 90+ degree days, tons of humidity only good for one thing: sitting at the beach, preferably in the water.  Next year I am hoping for my very own pool to sit in, but until then beach here I come!  Unfortunately all this heat and humidity doesn’t get me much in the mood for eating (never mind cooking!).  I tend to cook and grill very easy things during heat like this and this is one of those things that takes advantages of summer produce too,  Local corn is just starting to come into its peak season.  I’m not a huge fan of corn, but seriously, stop at a road-side stand and get some, its perfect right now!

Shrimp, corn, and potatoes.  You could serve this with a great big salad filled with cucumbers and tomatoes from the garden or do what I do: cut up some watermelon and serve it on the side.  Side-dish and dessert all in one!

I start by thawing and rinsing the shrimp.  In a large pot of water I put a lemon (juice and just throw the thing in after – seeds and all), a small head of garlic – top trimmed off – and a chopped onion.  I add a few tablespoons full of creole or Cajun seasoning and add the corn. Bring the pot to a boil; cook the corn 8 minutes.  Add in your potatoes (I use those small cute new potatoes from the farmer’s market) and let them cook 12 minutes.  Now I turn the heat off, toss in the shrimp, cover, and let sit 3 – 5 minutes or until the shrimp are opaque.  I strain everything and dump it all into a BIG serving dish and put it on the table.  Voila, dinner is done!

This will work for a big crowd (1/4 – 1/2 lb shrimp, 1 – 2 ears of corn, and 2 – 4 potatoes per person) with a BIG pot or an intimate dinner for two (nice bottle of wine, no kids). It is no more complicated for 25 than it is for 2… Try it, you’ll see!

shrimp, corn, and potatoes: shrimp boil

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Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Well summer is here and in full swing – time for swimming, boating, hiking, gardening, bike riding, and grilling.  But some days it’s even too hot too cook or you are just too darned tired from all that wave riding / paddle boarding you have done!  How about a great dinner you toss together in the crock pot in the morning and then it cooks all day (without heating up the house) and all you have to do is make (well ok, or buy) some cole slaw?  This pulled pork recipe comes from Real Simple (and so does the cole slaw recipe).

Yes, I can hear you all… but grilling is the summertime cooking method! but hey!  why wouldn’t you want to relax too?  I like to use my slow-cooker all year.

I love this recipe because it is also perfect for filling the freezer!  If you put all the ingredients in a zipper freezer bag remove the air, seal, and freeze it you will have all the assembly done.  You just have to take it out the night before, let it defrost in the fridge, and put it in the crock pot in the morning.  I buy the boneless pork loin ribs when they are on sale and assemble three or four ‘packages’ for my freezer; a total time saver!

pulled pork

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