Oatmeal or any other hot cereal cooked from scratch tastes significantly better than the microwaveable pre-mixed packs.
This recipe works well for cooking any hot cereal such as buckwheat, cream of wheat, bulgar wheat, or any mixed grains.
Boil oats with water on medium heat. If you're using cinnamon stick add it now and let it boil with the oats. Thick rolled oats take about 10-15 minutes to cook. Thin, quick cooking oats will cook in 5 minute but texture-feel in mouth is more pleasing with thick old-fashioned oats or steel cut oats. While the oats are cooking chop the nuts, figs and dates.
Once cooked add milk and let it heat for another 1 minute. Serve in a bowl. Add the chopped nuts, figs, dates, cinnamon powder.
The sweetness and flavor of dates & figs is appreciated better without any added sweetener. If you want to sweeten it, molasses or brown sugar give it a more complex flavor than sugar, honey, maple syrup or agave nectar.
Some other fruits and nuts that taste good with oatmeal are:
Apples diced fine and baked with cinnamon can be kept in fridge for a week. Add a 1-2 tablespoons to the cooked oatmeal.
Cardamom powder (instead of cinnamon powder)