In doing some research for this post, I looked into my Amazon account. I don’t know if you know this, but Amazon has a service called “Subscribe and Save” where you can sign up to order a consumable product on a recurring basis. There’s no commitment to maintain the subscription as you can cancel or change delivery frequency at any time, but the purchaser receives a discount on it and conveniently doesn’t have to remember to reorder.
What I found, as if I didn’t already have a hunch, is that I’m a bit predictable with my food habits. Yeah, I know any of my close friends and family reading this are rolling their eyes right now (duh!). So where I’m going with this is that my purchase history shows that since 2010, every four months, like clockwork, I’ve ordered a case of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Whole Grain Rolled Oats. Keep in mind that I have the subscription set to every six months but – every time (seriously) – request a delivery sooner.
Bob’s Red Mill is a company out of Milwaukie, Oregon that was started in the 1960s and sources an extensive line of organic and gluten free grains. The company has committed an entire facility to gluten free packaging and has many procedures in place to ensure that cross contamination does not occur.
Besides the facility, the tricky issue with oats is that they’re usually grown in fields that – as is the nature of crop rotation – have been populated with wheat (or other gluten-containing grains) in the recent past. And some of those wheat plants pop up in the succeeding years (as hardy plants – “weeds” – tend to do) and are then harvested with the oats. Bob’s Red Mill overcomes this by sourcing from farmers that exclusively grow oats on their land, eliminating the chance for cross contamination.
Some people with gluten sensitivity can tolerate any grocery store oats, but I’m not one of them. Example: My friend April has this seriously gluttonous recipe for No Bake cookies, the prime ingredient of which is quick oats. Now, unfortunately for me, I’ve only ever had Bob’s Red Mill’s GF Whole Grain Oats on hand, which are obviously awesome but don’t cook the same way. So maybe once a year, when April makes her No Bake cookies with grocery store quick oats, I lose self control and tend to eat one…or maybe…uh, two, only two, I swear (thou doth protest too much, methinks), which inevitably leads to regret the following day.
The only problem with Bob’s Whole Grain Oats as far as my trek is concerned is that, while I usually cook them for three minutes in the microwave, they take twenty minutes to cook on a stove. That’s not only a lot of time to wait when I’ll feel like chewing off my arm, but also it would require too much fuel. So I knew my only option would be to find quick oats.
I searched on Amazon since they’re a solid clearinghouse for most products and was surprised to find that Bob’s Red Mill also sells gluten free quick oats. I’m guessing they’ve had the product for years, but – ya know – I can get tunnel vision when I’ve found a food I like. When I contacted the company, I was informed that the quick oats would take no more than five minutes to cook on the stove, which is way more reasonable and (I believe) could probably be shortened depending on the stove used.
And when I asked if Bob’s Red Mill would be willing to support my trek with a donation, the company was only too happy to oblige. This one I don’t even want to paraphrase for fear of doing an injustice to the response.
“We could provide you with 4 cases (32 lbs) of oats. I think that should keep you well stocked, although I hope someone is drop shipping for you. If you ate a cup of oats every day, that should last you approximately 6 months. If that’s too much, we can send less. I think 3 cases will last you four months, so I’d rather send more than less. I’m sure you can use them after your trek. I’d be happy to ship them to the address below. If you should mention us on your blog (as a sponsor), do you think you could give a shout out to our Facebook page? (https://www.facebook.com/BobsRedMillNaturalFoods?ref=hl)? I’d so appreciate it. Let me know if that quantity of oats will work for you and I’ll get them on their way.”
To that, there’s only so much I can say:
- Are you friggin’ kidding me?! Thank you! It will definitely not go to waste. Some people get excited about winning the lottery or getting a promotion at work. I get excited about oats.
- Donation or no donation, I think my shopping habits accurately express my love for this company and its products. I’m only too happy to recommend that you visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/BobsRedMillNaturalFoods?ref=hl, not to mention the company’s website, www.bobsredmill.com, where you can find tons of high quality, off-the-beaten-track flours, grains, and meals.
The other day, my mom gave me a call and instead of saying hello, she said, “Are you trying to give me a hernia?” Startled by the greeting, I asked for clarification.
“There are two boxes at my front door, one really small and the other monstrous.”
So exciting! It never gets old to get surprise packages in the mail.
“Wait, how big is the bigger box? How small is the small box?”
“It says it’s 38 pounds.”
“38 pounds?! Bob’s Red Mill was sending 32 pounds of oats. I wonder what else is in there! Open them! Open them!”
“Grumble grumble. I just got home from work. Let’s see. There are four cases of oats in the bigger box…”
“…and the smaller box…What is this? A bag of Gluten Free Muesli?”
“Oooooh! So exciting! I love muesli! Gluten free?!”
“And, hm, um, you know those things you seal bags with?”
“Yeah, they put some of those in there too. And a t-shirt.”
Giggle. I felt like a kid getting a Rock Tumbler or Erector Set for her birthday (What? I couldn’t be the only nerdy kid that got excited about those “toys,” right?).
With Bob’s Red Mill’s generous donation, I have one less thing to think about, and my trek breakfast is set in stone: Gluten Free Quick Oats with Manitoba Harvest’s Hemp Hearts. And, just as exciting, both my mom and April have agreed to use a few of the oats to make and send me delicious gluten free cookies, this time without any day-after regrets.