Would you mind ever so much helping me win a trip to Portland to compete in Bob’s Red Mill Spar for the Spurtle Contest? You can watch my video below but please take a moment to go HERE and click “Like” on the WhippedTheBlog video.

I know that blogger and blog reader relationships are not traditional friendships. Of course, I have never had a chance to drop off some fresh baked cookies, cook for you, or debate a hot topic over the dinner table. But, we are not exactly strangers either. Today, I treat you like a friend as I am going to ask you for a favor. I would really, really love to go to Portland, Oregon and compete in the Bob’s Red Mill Spar for the Spurtle contest. Why?  Well, I adore Bob’s Red Mill and I would love to meet this wonderful man who gave his multi-million dollar company to his employees. Also, my best pal lives in Portland and she and I could really use a visit with each other right now.

Though votes on this web page don’t guarantee a win, they help. And, since I am blatantly self-promoting today, I will just say that the recipe is pretty yummy. 

How did I come upon the idea for Chocolate Maple Oatmeal Topped with Bacon? I always loved warm, chocolate breakfast cereal. My mom often made oatmeal or Malt O Meal. Occasionally, we were treated to CoCo Wheats. When I heard about the Spar for the Spurtle, I knew the time had come to create a new, updated version of chocolate breakfast cereal. Pure maple syrup is my go-to for breakfast sweetening so it was an obvious choice. As for the bacon? Well, I have to entirely credit my friend Katrina Markoff of Vosges Haut-Chocolat for that idea. Her bacon and chocolate creations have revolutionized chocolate as we know it. She has taught me that salty, smokey bacon is a near perfect match for all things chocolate.

Though Mini Whipped requested I leave the bacon off her bowl, she asked for seconds of the Chocolate Maple Oatmeal. Matter-of-fact, she wanted to eat it again for dinner the next night. So, it is seemingly kid-friendly and though it tastes decadent, this recipe is not that bad for you! Steel cut oats are loaded with health benefits as is dark chocolate. You can substitute the milk for water if you eat dairy-free. And, I believe that this recipe is gluten-free too.

Okay, enough plugs… thank you for putting up with all my self-promotion today. I will get back to the kitchen and eat some humble pie.

Chocolate Maple Oatmeal Topped with Bacon
Makes 4 servings

1 cup Bob’s Red Mill steel cut oats
1 Tablespoon butter (or bacon fat)
Pinch of sea salt
3 cups boiling water
1/2 cup whole milk
1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Valrhona)
4 Tablespoonds pure maple syrup
4 pieces of bacon, cooked until crispy
cream (optional)

Melt butter (or bacon fat) in a sauce pan. Add the oats and toast them for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. You will smell an aroma like popcorn when they are ready. Add the boiling water and reduce heat. Water and oats should be bubbling slightly at the proper temperature. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly. Add a healthy pinch of sea salt and 1/2 cup milk and continue stirring for 5 minutes. The liquid should be mostly absorbed and the oats should be soft. Turn off the heat. Stir in the cocoa powder and syrup.

Spoon the Chocolate Maple Oatmeal into serving bowls. Top with coarsely chopped bacon. Drizzle with cream.