make my oatmeal less healthy
January 31, 2010 10:10 AM   Subscribe

The other day, I had a cup of oatmeal from Jamba Juice. The oatmeal was just fine, but what really made it for me was the "brown sugar crumble" that was added. In my quest to create my own, I'm finding a lot of "brown sugar crumble" toppings online, but the recipes I'm finding are for cruble that is spread on top of a dessert and baked at the same time as muffins etc. I'd like to create a pre-made cup of crumble that I can store for a while and just take spoonfuls as needed. Before baking a sheet of crumble without any baked goods, I thought I'd ask if anybody here has a proven method. Can anybody help me out? thanks.
posted by jimmereeno to Food & Drink (8 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
You might try baking this mixture on top of a layer of corn flakes in a 350 degree oven (until it seems crumbly-ish enough):
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Not sure how well this would work because most of the time I bake it on top of french toast stuff. It's obviously in no way healthy.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:45 AM on January 31, 2010

The main issue is the brown sugar and butter ingredients that are standard in these toppings. Even after baking the brown sugar will likely clump up unless refrigerated or frozen (and even there will likely be clumping). My guess is that the secret ingredient in the Jamba Juice crumble is some sort of preservative or other chemical agent.

Having said that: this "streusel" topping is pretty easy and easy to experiment with:

Cream 1 stick of unsalted butter (at room temp) with 1 cup of brown sugar.

Add 1 cup flour, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1 Tbs lemon juice, pinch of salt.

If you like nuts add 1/2 cup of walnuts or pecans.
posted by jeremias at 10:48 AM on January 31, 2010

Best answer: Hmmm. If you don't cook the flour, jeremias, doesn't it keep that "flour" taste?

I make a pie topping that's

3/4 cup chopped nuts
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
3 Tbs butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt

Stir together and cut the butter in (or just mix it all up in a food processor). I expect spreading it on a baking sheet and baking at like 350F for 20-30 minutes might get the texture about right. If so, it would be pretty easy to scale up, then store in an air-tight container (although I expect it wouldn't be too shelf-stable).
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:00 AM on January 31, 2010 [15 favorites]

Incidentally, I'm almost certain that Jamba Juice just uses plain old brown sugar on their oatmeal -- I know they call it "brown sugar crumble" but having watched them make my oatmeal a bunch of times, I don't think it's anything fancier than just the sugar itself.
posted by eleutheria at 12:54 PM on January 31, 2010

Response by poster: My house smells terrific, thank you GenjiandProust. Much better than the Jamba-juice topping.

I think this would be great on ice-cream or yogurt too. (I don't think I'll need to worry about shelf-life.)

thanks again.
posted by jimmereeno at 2:36 PM on January 31, 2010

Best answer: I think the word you're looking for is streusel, which would be something like what GenjiandProust described. I have something else to suggest, too. I have a crisp posted on my blog that's originally from Cook's Illustrated (though I use white whole wheat flour instead of the all-purpose they do). It is intended to be put on top of fruit, of course, but here's the thing: in the original recipe you bake it separately, then put it on top of the fruit, in order to get a majorly crisp, crunchy topping. You could just bake it a touch longer to use it on your oatmeal. It would be less like GenjiandProust's streusel and more like a crumbled shortcake cookie with almonds in it. It is so intoxicatingly delicious that it is hard to get it to make it to the fruit.
posted by jocelmeow at 5:36 PM on January 31, 2010 [2 favorites]

Best answer: This isn't really answering your question directly, but you might want to consider instead buying really good sprinkling sugar--the kind that comes in big fat crystals with lots of dimension flavor-wise, where a little goes a long way. Demerara and turbinado muscovado are my two favorites.
posted by ifjuly at 7:26 PM on January 31, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks for all the suggestions. Any way to keep the oatmeal interesting is a good thing.

I do like the idea of making a topping/streusel... but also really like the convenience idea of a larger sugar crystal for when I don't have the time.

Hopefully this will keep the oatmeal going through the rest of the winter.

thanks again.
posted by jimmereeno at 7:52 PM on January 31, 2010

« Older Citation needed for Frank Zappa's best bands ever...   |   Art for art's sake...? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.