I am patiently waiting for my husband to finish reading Thinking Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman, so that I can have my turn. In the meantime, I guess I’ll make some oatmeal.
After enjoying the most smooth, richly textured hot breakfast cereal imaginable on our trips to London over the years, I finally decided to see if I could duplicate it at home. The answer was on the shelves of our nearest grocery store: McCann’s Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal.
Steel-cut oats are coarsely chopped groats (hulled oats with some of the bran intact), whereas the rolled oats we are more familiar with are bran-free, flattened with heavy rollers, and often steamed or processed in some way to shorten cooking time.
Oatmeal made from rolled oats can be on the table or in a to-go cup in 5-10 minutes, even faster if you use the instant variety. Nothing is handier in a pinch on a cold, winter morning, especially for college students and busy parents of young children.
Oatmeal made from steel-cut oats, on the other hand, takes up to an hour from start to finish and requires four cups of water per one cup of oats. The result is the best oatmeal you will ever have. Trust me. If you want to enjoy it first thing in the morning, simply toss the ingredients together in a slow-cooker the night before.
Writing offers similar options. The quick-cooking, instant variety is useful for fast drafts, daily blog posts, or other on-the-go word snacks when there is little time to wait around.
But writing that is allowed to simmer for a while, that absorbs more of what surrounds it, and that is stirred now and again, tasted, re-seasoned, and then covered and allowed to cook a little longer while we go about our other business, will be all the richer and more satisfying for the waiting.
Do you have an example to share of writing that has been worth the wait?