My Uncle Jacob passed away this weekend at the age of 91, and he was a remarkable man. A playful adventurer and an opinionated intellect, Jacob was a publisher by trade, and an always willing helper in the kitchen. He mandolined French Fries, peeled carrots, and pushed warm, cooked apples through the food mill. He loved nothing more than a fresh baked roll with butter, and he washed every soiled dish he could find. He rightfully earned his nick name FOSP, for Food Service Professional. Prepping was his speciality, not cooking, but there was one thing he created and prepared, and it is a nut filled breakfast staple that he has passed on to my children.
Jacob made oatmeal in the mornings, and when it was almost finished, right off the stove, he would swirl a heaping Tablespoon of slightly sweetened peanut butter in to it. The heat of the oatmeal nearly melts the peanut butter, and the resulting cereal is streaked with warm streams of protein packed goodness. Top it off with a sprinkle of chopped peanuts, or a dollop of jam, and you are all set for the day. We’ve tried almond butter, not necessarily Jacob approved but delicious. Nutella is a natural addition too.
I’ll miss Jacob, for many reasons. He stood fast for his beliefs, said what he thought, and always lent a helping hand. Oatmeal swirled with any nut butter will always be his signature dish to me, and we can remember him each day we prepare it for breakfast.