Oatmeal, spiked with cocoa powder and healthy toppings, a sweet breakfast treat. Steel-cut oats, toasted in brown butter and cooked with unsweetened cocoa, makes the average bowl of porridge all the more sophisticated. PICTURE: Andrew Scrivani
Brown-Butter Chocolate Oatmeal (Serves 4)

Oatme­al, spike­d with cocoa powde­r and healt­hy toppi­ngs, a sweet break­fast treat­. Steel­-cut oats, toast­ed in brown butte­r and cooke­d with unswe­etene­d cocoa­, makes the avera­ge bowl of porri­dge all the more sophi­stica­ted


2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups steel-cut oats

3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-process

1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

Raw sugar, honey or maple syrup, to taste


Cream, milk or coconut milk


Flaky sea salt

Sliced bananas

Shredded coconut

Sliced dates

Sliced avocado


In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. 
Let cook, swirling occasionally, until it turns deep golden brown and smells nutty, 2 to 4 minutes. You’ll know it’s close when the bubbling quiets down as the moisture cooks off. 
Add oats and sauté until they turn golden at the edges, 2 to 4 minutes. 
Scrape oats and butter into a bowl and reserve.
To the same pot (no need to rinse it out first) add 4 1/2 cups water and bring to a boil. 
Add cocoa powder and whisk well to dissolve lumps. 
Whisk in buttered oats and salt.
Lower to a gentle simmer. Let cook, stirring occasionally, until done to taste, 25 to 30 minutes. 
Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let sit for 5 minutes. 
Check the thickness; thin with boiling water if needed. 
Stir in sweetener to taste and serve with toppings of your choice.

The New York Times