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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Emergency Food/Supplies / All about Oats
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    All about Oats

    Amberngriffinco
    Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:58 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    OATS AT A GLANCE

    Samuel Johnson's 1755 dictionary defined oats as "A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland appears to support the people." The Scotsman's retort to this was, "That's why England has such good horses, and Scotland has such fine men!"

    Oats (Avena sativa) have a sweet flavor that makes them a favorite for breakfast cereals. Unique among the most widely-eaten grains, oats almost never have their bran and germ removed in processing. So if you see oats or oat flour on the label, relax: you're virtually guaranteed to be getting whole grain.

    In the U.S., most oats are steamed and flattened to produce rolled oats, sold as "old-fashioned" or regular oats, quick oats, and instant oats. The more oats are flattened and steamed, the quicker they cook – and the softer they become. If you prefer a chewier, nuttier texture, consider steel-cut oats, also sometimes called Irish or Scottish oats. Steel-cut oats consist of the entire oat kernel (similar in look to a grain of rice), sliced once or twice into smaller pieces to help water penetrate and cook the grain. Cooked for about 20-30 minutes, steel-cut oats create a breakfast porridge that delights many people who didn't realize they love oatmeal!


    HEALTH BENEFITS OF OATS

    Scores of studies have documented the many health benefits of oats.

    • Eating oats helps lower LDL "bad" cholesterol and may help reduce the risk of heart disease
    .
    • Oats help you feel fuller longer, which helps control your weight.
    • Oatmeal and oats may help lower blood pressure.

    • Oats may help reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, since their soluble fiber helps control blood sugar
    .
    • Oats help cut the use of laxatives, without the side effects associated with medications.

    • Oats are high in beta-glucans, a kind of starch that stimulates the immune system and inhibits tumors. This may help reduce your risk of some cancers.

    • Early introduction of oats in children's diets may help reduce their risk of asthma.

    • Oats are higher in protein and healthy fats, and lower in carbohydrates than most other whole grains.

    • Oats contain more than 20 unique polyphenols called avenanthramides, which have strong anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-itching activity.


    COOKING TIPS AND RECIPES


    Ask the person next to you to name all the ways we can eat oats, and "as oatmeal porridge, for breakfast" – would be the likely answer, followed quickly by "oatmeal cookies, granola, and granola bars." But that's only the beginning. Take a look at a few of the oat recipes right on this website, for inspiration

    :
    • Three Pepper Oat Pilaf – a dinner side dish

    • Stuffed Turkey Burgers with Smoky Aioli – a zesty main course

    • ABC Meatball Soup – a great lunch choice for kids

    • Spicy Oat Crusted Chicken with Sunshine Salsa – a healthy alternative to fried chicken


    As these recipes indicate, there are many ways you can cook with oats. They make a great crispy coating; they extend meatloaf and burgers, while enhancing their juiciness; they can be boiled into a creamy porridge; or they can make a savory side dish. Click here for cooking tips for oatmeal.


    FUN FACTS ABOUT OATS


    • Oatmeal rated #1 among breakfast foods and #3 overall in a “Satiety Index” created by Australian researchers seeking to find foods that make people feel full and satisfied the longest.

    • Oats grow best in cooler climates with plenty of rainfall – conditions inhospitable to most grains. This explains why they’re so popular in Scotland and Ireland!

    • The inedible hulls of oats can contribute to a healthier planet. In a joint Quaker/University of Iowa project, oat hulls in a biomass boiler provide 14% of the energy at the university, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 70,000 tons a year – the equivalent of taking 1,200 cars off the road. As of early 2010, the program had saved the university over a million dollars.

    • Want to visit Oatmeal, Texas? It's about 56 miles northwest of Austin – but you'll have to stop over in nearby Bertram, TX for the annual Oatmeal Festival.

    • Oats are used in the food industry as a stabilizer in foods like ice cream.
    • Because of their natural anti-itching properties, oats are used in the cosmetic industry for a variety of products. The name Aveeno, for instance, comes from the botanical name avena, for oats.

    • Oats were originally considered a nuisance weed, to be pulled up and burned when they appeared in fields of wheat and barley.

    • In Britain, a warming and nourishing oatmeal broth drink was traditionally made from oat husks soaked until they soured; it was called “sowans” in Scotland, and “brewis” in Wales
    .
    • Many people consider oatmeal brulée the ultimate porridge: picture a thick bowl of oatmeal topped with a thin layer of caramelized sugar and some fresh berries.

    • Russia, Canada, the United States, Finland, and Poland are the world’s leading producers of oats.

    • Oats are naturally gluten-free, but may be contaminated with gluten during growing and processing. Look for oats certified gluten-free if you are sensitive to gluten
    .
    • An 18-ounce package of old fashioned oats contains about 26,000 rolled oats.

    • Early attempts to promote oats as a good food for people – not just for horses – prompted editorials and cartoons poking fun at oat-eaters as likely to develop a whinny. Still, only 5% of oats grown worldwide are consumed by humans today.



    THREE OATMEAL VARIATIONS YIELD: EACH RECIPE SERVES 2.

    Greek Oatmeal

    1 Cup rolled Oats
    1.5 Cups water
    1 Cup milk
    Feta and Black Pepper


    Pomegranate Oatmeal

    1 Cup rolled Oats
    3/4 Cup water
    3/4 Cup Pomegranate juice
    1 Cup milk
    Dollop of butter and brown sugar


    Chocolate Oatmeal

    1 Cup rolled Oats
    1.5 Cups water
    1 Cup milk
    1.5 Tablespoons cocoa powder
    1.5 Tablespoons sugar
    Honey (optional)
    Cinnamon (optional)



    Oats at a Glance

    Samuel Johnson's 1755 dictionary defined oats as "A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland appears to support the people." The Scotsman's retort to this was, "That's why England has such good horses, and Scotland has such fine men!"

    Oats (Avena sativa) have a sweet flavor that makes them a favorite for breakfast cereals. Unique among the most widely-eaten grains, oats almost never have their bran and germ removed in processing. So if you see oats or oat flour on the label, relax: you're virtually guaranteed to be getting whole grain.

    In the U.S., most oats are steamed and flattened to produce rolled oats, sold as "old-fashioned" or regular oats, quick oats, and instant oats. The more oats are flattened and steamed, the quicker they cook – and the softer they become. If you prefer a chewier, nuttier texture, consider steel-cut oats, also sometimes called Irish or Scottish oats. Steel-cut oats consist of the entire oat kernel (similar in look to a grain of rice), sliced once or twice into smaller pieces to help water penetrate and cook the grain. Cooked for about 20-30 minutes, steel-cut oats create a breakfast porridge that delights many people who didn't realize they love oatmeal!


    Health Benefits of Oats

    Scores of studies have documented the many health benefits of oats. Eating oats helps lower LDL "bad" cholesterol and may help reduce the risk of heart disease.

    Oats help you feel fuller longer, which helps control your weight. Oatmeal and oats may help lower blood pressure. Oats may help reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, since their soluble fiber helps control blood sugar. Oats help cut the use of laxatives, without the side effects associated with medications. Oats are high in beta-glucans, a kind of starch that stimulates the immune system and inhibits tumors. This may help reduce your risk of some cancers.

    Early introduction of oats in children's diets may help reduce their risk of asthma. Oats are higher in protein and healthy fats, and lower in carbohydrates than most other whole grains. Oats contain more than 20 unique polyphenols called avenanthramides, which have strong anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-itching activity.

    Fun Facts about Oats

    Oatmeal rated #1 among breakfast foods and #3 overall in a “Satiety Index” created by Australian researchers seeking to find foods that make people feel full and satisfied the longest.


    Oats grow best in cooler climates with plenty of rainfall – conditions inhospitable to most grains. This explains why they’re so popular in Scotland and Ireland! The inedible hulls of oats can contribute to a healthier planet. In a joint Quaker/University of Iowa project, oat hulls in a biomass boiler provide 14% of the energy at the university, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 70,000 tons a year – the equivalent of taking 1,200 cars off the road. As of early 2010, the program had saved the university over a million dollars. Want to visit Oatmeal, Texas? It's about 56 miles northwest of Austin – but you'll have to stop over in nearby Bertram, TX for the annual Oatmeal Festival. Oats are used in the food industry as a stabilizer in foods like ice cream.

    Because of their natural anti-itching properties, oats are used in the cosmetic industry for a variety of products. The name Aveeno, for instance, comes from the botanical name avena, for oats.


    Oats were originally considered a nuisance weed, to be pulled up and burned when they appeared in fields of wheat and barley. In Britain, a warming and nourishing oatmeal broth drink was traditionally made from oat husks soaked until they soured; it was called “sowans” in Scotland, and “brewis” in Wales.
    Many people consider oatmeal brulée the ultimate porridge: picture a thick bowl of oatmeal topped with a thin layer of caramelized sugar and some fresh berries.

    Russia, Canada, the United States, Finland, and Poland are the world’s leading producers of oats. Oats are naturally gluten-free, but may be contaminated with gluten during growing and processing. Look for oats certified gluten-free if you are sensitive to gluten.
    An 18-ounce package of old fashioned oats contains about 26,000 rolled oats.


    Early attempts to promote oats as a good food for people – not just for horses – prompted editorials and cartoons poking fun at oat-eaters as likely to develop a whinny. Still, only 5% of oats grown worldwide are consumed by humans today.
    UnknownChef86
    Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:06 am
    Forum Host
    That's a great article...thanks for sharing it!

    The "oatmeal brulee" got my attention. yummy.gif icon_biggrin.gif
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