A baked oatmeal version of chocolate croissants. Gluten free and much healthier than the original pastries.
The Fourth of July may be over, but there’s another red, white and blue celebration right around the corner because July 14 is Bastille Day! Clearly July is a popular month for revolutions.
In case you didn’t know, Bastille Day celebrates the storming of the Bastille prison on July 14, 1789, which was a key event in the French Revolution. The French Revolution, oddly enough, happened before Napoleon Bonaparte became emperor in 1804. In other words, the French had a monarchy, went to the trouble of having a revolution, and wound up with an emperor.
I’m pretty sure there’s a saying somewhere about history repeating itself…
Anyway, I couldn’t let France’s national holiday pass by without some kind of French-themed breakfast. Like many people, when I think about French food my mind immediately turns to pastries and all kinds of buttery desserts.
As much as I love éclairs, croissants and macarons, I was looking for a breakfast that was easy to throw together – and one that wasn’t loaded with butter. Maybe I’ll make real croissants or brioche rolls next Bastille Day, but this year I’m sticking to my beloved baked oatmeal.
Fun Fact: The French phrase for ‘breakfast’ is ‘petit déjeuner‘, which literally translates to ‘little lunch’.
So, what’s in this baked oatmeal version of a French pastry? A mixture of applesauce and yogurt for moisture, an egg white for puffyness, and butter extract for flavor. Plus plenty of oats, obviously.
If you can’t get your hands on butter extract (which is available on Amazon), I have a few ideas for possible substitutions:
- A tablespoon of almond butter (or other nut butter)
- A teaspoon or two of actual melted butter
- For the yogurt called for in the recipe, use a dessert-flavored yogurt (something like caramel or cheesecake-flavored yogurt – or at least vanilla)
Then there’s the all-important chocolate center. Is this 100% necessary? Of course (what kind of sad chocolate croissant doesn’t contain chocolate!?).
A large spoonful of Nutella works best here, otherwise use chocolate peanut butter (or another chocolate nut butter). For the oatmeal in the pictures I used chocolate PB2, which doesn’t stay as gooey as real nut butters (unfortunately).
If you’re feeling chocolatey, also throw in a handful of chocolate chips.
Side note: ‘Chocolatey’ would have to be the best feeling there is.
Just before I say au revoir for today, here are three more facts about Bastille Day:
- When the Bastille prison was stormed by the mob, there were only seven prisoners being held there.
- In France, Bastille Day is formally known as La Fête Nationale.
- When Marie Antoinette (the queen at the time of the French Revolution) learned that the peasants had no bread, she is thought to have said ‘Qu’ils mangent de la brioche’ – or ‘Let them eat cake’. However, it’s highly debatable whether that remark was made by Marie Antoinette or someone else.
Nevertheless, it’s a good excuse to eat cake on Bastille Day.
- 1 egg white
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 2 tablespoons yogurt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon butter extract
- 1 - 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- Good pinch of salt
- ½ cup milk
- 2 large spoonfuls of Nutella or chocolate peanut butter
- Chocolate chips, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease two ramekins.
- In a bowl, lightly whisk the egg white with a fork. Mix in the applesauce, yogurt, vanilla extract, butter extract and maple syrup.
- Add the rolled oats, baking powder and salt. Pour in the milk, and mix until well combined.
- Divide half the oatmeal batter between the prepared ramekins. Place a large spoonful of Nutella (or chocolate peanut butter) in the middle of each ramekin. If desired, also add a few chocolate chips.
- Divide the remaining oatmeal batter between the ramekins, making sure the Nutella is completely covered.
- Bake for 22 - 28 minutes, or until the tops are dry and a little firm. If removing the baked oatmeals from the ramekins, allow them to cool for 5 minutes first. Bon appétit!