Savory Oatmeal with Carrots, Peas and Ham

Savory Oatmeal with Carrots, Peas and Ham

52 weeks of cooking – Inspired by books

If you’ve read the About Me page than you know how I started my journey on tall ships, with inspiration from a book. Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer follows the tale of a young girl, Jacky, she disguises herself as a boy and runs away to sea on a British navy ship in the early 1800’s. She dives into all of her food with great gusto even if it is the simplest of of fairs, like hard tack, the traditional ration of the British navy. One food that comes up several times throughout the series is burgoo.

“Burgoo can be a lot of things, from simple oatmeal and molasses, to ground-up hardtack and molasses, to a stew with any number of things in it.” Under the Jolly Roger

“It’s called burgoo. It’s oatmeal boiled in water with whatever they have around to toss in with it. I think this batch has a few peas and maybe some crumbled-up biscuits in it. There’s some pork grease floating on top.” In the Belly of the Bloodhound

It’s pretty much savory oatmeal. My husband has been making savory oatmeal for years, cooking oatmeal in stock, maybe adding an egg and leftover. Over time he’s developed several flavor combinations, American breakfast: with bacon, cheddar cheese and a fried egg or Pesto: pine nuts, basil, parmesan and olive oil.


Savory Oatmeal


  • 1/4 c barley
  • 1 medium carrot, diced
  • 2 c chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 c rolled oats
  • 1 slice thick cut ham, cubed
  • 1/2 c frozen peas, thawed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • butter
  • parmesan


  1. Cook the barley in boiling water until almost tender, throw in the chopped carrots until the barley is soft, by this time the carrots should be tender as well but not mushy, drain.
  2. In a medium pot bring the chicken stock to a boil, add in the cooked barley, carrots and the oatmeal. Stir to combine, put a lid on it and reduce the heat to medium low, allow to simmer for a few minutes until the oats are cooked.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients, stir and let sit let sit with the lid on for a minute for them to warm through.
  4. Serve with hot sauce, more cheese, crumbled biscuits and/or a fried egg.

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