Twist on Oliver

This morning I donned my tam and knickers and pulled some gruel out of the cupboard….

Oliver Twist style.

After doing a little research on the differences between Malt-O-Meal, porridge, gruel, and Cream of Wheat, I discovered two important notes.

1. Farina is milled from the germ of the wheat grain and the term is Latin for meal or flour.

2. The man advertising Cream of Wheat has a name, Rastus.

At first I thought this was cool, until I discovered Rastus was a deragatory name for black men in the early 1900s and is still considered offensive, at least according to the Finnish. The early Cream of Wheat advertisements included such gems as this:


The Cream of Wheat website (yes, I went to the website, because I love playing detective) did not include this advertisement in their “memory gallery,” instead preferring to remember images like this:

Oh, how precious.

I have personally never cared for the texture of Cream of Wheat, but I also don’t like wasting food. I don’t think Dave ever intends to touch the box, which leaves it to me to create a palatable breakfast out of it. After perusing the suggested stir-ins…

I decided I was in the mood for a savory breakfast. Also, I don’t trust them anymore….what other secrets are you hiding your coffers C-o-W?!

Instead, I sauteed some spinach with minced garlic.

And added one chopped Boca sausage link.

I prepared the cereal according to the package directions except I upped the water from 2/3 cup to 3/4 cup for more volume. After it finished cooking in the microwave, I added a tsp of chia seeds, red pepper flake, onion flake, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

Hmm…still looks a little sketchy. Quick, throw in the spinach and sausage! And then top it with a fried egg!

Much better.

This was…not bad! The texture of the cereal was still dense and chewy, but the flavors of sausage, spinach, garlic, and egg yolk made it into quite a delectable bowl of gruel.

Yes, Oliver, you may have some more. And bring some for Rastus, too.


One thought on “Twist on Oliver

  1. Pingback: Old Favorites | Designs on Dinner

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