Combine all spices in a small bowl and stir or whisk to blend, set aside.
for the oatmeal
Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a medium pot (that has a lid) over medium heat. Add apples and stir to coat with the butter. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of the spice blend over the apples, and cook the apples for about 5 minutes, stirring occassionally, until the apples begin to soften.
Scootch the apples aside in the pot, add 1 tablespoon butter to it and let melt. Add the oats to the butter and stir to coat - try to keep them separate from the apples. Toast the oats in the butter for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add boiling water to the pan and stir well. Cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
Uncover and reduce heat to low. Let the oatmeal set for a few minutes.
Stir in the brown sugar/maple syrup, spice blend, and salt. Taste to make sure there's enough seasonings (you might need a little more spice blend or a pinch of salt). Add milk, if using and stir until the oatmeal reaches desired creaminess (I usually use 1 to 2 tablespoons).
Spoon into bowls and top each with a pat of butter, if desired.
Butter Toasted Apple Pie Oatmeal was originally published on https://soupaddict.com/butter-toasted-apple-pie-oatmeal/