Anna Liina Laitinen is a professional climber from Finland and the newest addition the Mountain Hardwear climbing team. When she’s not climbing 5.14 or training at her local gym, she’s adding to her already expansive oatmeal repertoire. After seeing a few cookbook cover-worthy bowls pop up in Anna’s Instagram Stories, we reached out and asked if she’d share her go-to recipe. Enjoy!
1⁄2 cup (1dl) of non-steamed oats. My favorite brand in Finland is Riihipuoti, but if you’re located in the States, Bob’s Red Mill organic extra thick whole grain rolled oats will do. The non-steamed oats act differently – they expand and make the oats fluffy! They also have a stronger flavor and more nutrients. Different brands cook differently so you have to learn how they’ll act. Even though you’re always using the same amount of oats, water, soy milk etc., the technique matters a lot.
1 cup (2dl) of water. The oats are boiled in the water, and the milk will be added later when it’s simmering. Not too much of water at first… you can add it later (and we will).
Seasonings. Salt, cinnamon, bourbon, vanilla. And in Scandinavia, we LOVE cardamom!
1⁄4 cup (0,5dl) of unsweetened vanilla almond milk, soymilk, or milk.
2 egg whites. Adding some extra proteins keeps you full longer! Egg whites also give a creamy touch.
1 tsp Chia seeds.
Toppings! Berries, nuts, sugar free jam, peanut butter, coconut flakes… Dried apples or blueberries. It’s important to add something crunchy! I fell in love with Fiona’s toasted almond granola.
Cold cottage cheese, or unsweetened plain soy yogurt. Finland and Sweden are the promised lands of delicious and good cottage cheese! It’s quite challenging to find good cottage cheese when abroad, but in the States I’ve been using Breakstones or Lucerne.
Note: When the oats are made well it tastes SO good that you don’t even need that many toppings! If you’re loading the oats with tons of toppings there’s something wrong with the oats.
1 – Bring water to boil with the seasonings (no salt yet!!!) and add the oats. Reduce the heat and mix the oats gently without stirring (this is important!). Place it aside and let it rest for 10-20min while it soaks all the water. It’s important not to stir and disturb the oats while you’re slow cooking them, so simmer it for a couple of seconds with the lid on. Give it some time to rest and grow. You can also bring the heat down and let it boil on low heat while keeping the lid on, but it’s important not to stir! Add just a tiny bit of liquid if it needs it. If it has taken forever and there’s still some liquid, bring it to boil again. The most important is that the oats have cooked and grown as big as they can.
Sometimes I might start doing some finger board, study or go for a little morning jog while the oats are resting. The longer you let the oats soak and rest, the better is the taste!
2 – Add the egg whites to the slightly warm oats (you can add just a tiny tiny bit of water and heat it up again). Make sure you don’t cook the eggs too fast! Patience, patience. If you start to see white stripes, you’re starting to make omelette oats.
3 – Add salt. Some people add the salt to boiling water with the other seasonings. I’ve read that adding the salt too early might disturb the resting oats and affect how they’ll expand. Might be mambo-jambo, but I add the salt after the oats have rested for just in case ;).
4 – Add 1 tsp of chia seeds. Before the eggs are completely done and the oats have gotten thick again, add chia seeds (they also absorb some water). You can also add a tiny bit of maca in case you’re feeling tired or you wanna boost your double-session day! Adding the maca also makes the oats a little thicker. Now you can also mix something else like banana, roasted nuts, raspberries, dates…. Place it aside and let the eggs cook gently. If the oats are too watery you can simmer it on low and make it thicker.
5 – Continue to simmer. Play one game of Call of Duty, check the emails or pack the climbing bag.
6 – Add a tiny bit of milk or soymilk to make it slightly creamy but thick. The flavor stands out more if the texture is a little thicker!
7 – Heat the bowl in the microwave (my boyfriend loves to add warm peanut butter on the bottom).
8 – Put it on the bowl and add the toppings! Enjoy <3