Updated: Recipe for homemade Coconut-Oatmeal Cereal

I'm not much for dry cereal: I don't buy it because Rob and I don't drink milk, and it seems sort of pointless without it.

We'd been enjoying stovetop oatmeal for the last few months, but warmer temperatures make it too hot to do that these days. I saw this recipe for Coconut-Oatmeal Cereal in my trust "More-With-Less Cookbook" and decided to try it. I used unsweetened coconut flakes.

It's pretty darn good with yogurt, and I didn't stir it much while it was baking because I wanted bigger chunks of cereal. It was pretty easy and makes a great breakfast or snack. I eat it with plain yogurt, and the coconut has a really delicious, roasted flavor. Oh but one tip: keep an eye on it while it bakes. I ignored the funky smell coming out of my oven after about 35 minutes, and the contents of the pan on the bottom rack was a total, burned loss.

If you're interested in switching up your breakfast foods, this might be worth a try.

Coconut-Oatmeal Cereal

Preheat oven 350 degrees

3 cups white or whole-wheat flour

2 cups flake coconut

2 cups quick oatmeal

3 tablespoons sesame seed

3 tablespoons water

3/4 cup sugar

5 tablespoons cooking oil (I used canola and will experiment in the future with substituting flaxmeal)

Mix well. Bake in two or three shallow baking pans until browned, about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally to produce crumbles of desired size. Serve as cold cereal. Makes 16 1/2 cup servings.

Options: Add raisins, brown sugar, sunflower seeds or nuts for variety.

Tropical version: Use 1 finely grated fresh coconut to replace flake coconut and omit 3 tablespoons water.

June 2 update: I tried making this recipe again, with several changes. The last version was somewhat floury, so I cut that amount down to 2 cups flour instead of 3. I also used 1/2 cup sugar, rather than 3/4 cup. I also used nine tablespoons (a 1/4 cup plus one tablespoon) flaxmeal to substitute for some oil, and then 2 tablespoons oil, as well.

Also, I set my kitchen timer for 25 minutes, pulled the cookie sheets and stirred the cereal. I then switched their positions (sheet on top rack to bottom and vice versa) and watched them carefully for about seven more minutes. I pulled them out when they were toasty and golden, not burned.

This cereal is SO good as breakfast or dessert with a scoop of plain nonfat yogurt and some sliced strawberries on top. I'm pretty sure using less flour made the sesame seeds' flavor stand out more, too. This version is more like a granola, and I like it.

Photo from this Flickr page

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