Can I have some more, Please? The Great Porridge Renaissance


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What’s cooking?

A coupla weeks back, I hankered for a new dish of sorts. It was brunch-time, I had a few minutes and my Rotunda (it’s the elaborate name I use for the rotating shelf in my kitchen) held the necessaries.

I went online, as you do, and found this recipe from The Guardian. Now, you can go there and read Felicity Cloake’s version of “Perfect Porridge” or you can read + see what happens in the real world, when you try to do it yourself.

If you no wanna cook (not really cooking though is it?) then head down to the Porridge Cafe, opening early March, somewhere around Old Street, London (www.porridgecafe.com) where they are cooking up all types of weird & wonderful, sweet & savoury Porridges. Back to me!

I call it: Porridge

For 2 peeps (halve it down for one, it works):

1/2 cup coarse oatmeal (50g)

1/2 cup medium oatmeal (50g)

1 cup whole milk (200 ml) – I use semi-skimmed, Purists don’t use any! Eek!

2 cups water (400 ml)

2 pinches of salt

Honey + Greek Yoghurt to serve.

“It’s just Porrdige love.
Yes, but it’s what you DO with it ….” 
The Castle (reimagined)

1. Get dem oats and tip into a non-stick fry pan. Turn the hob on a medium heat and cook until someone rushes in, asking if you’re making popcorn. That’s the aroma you’re going for. They should look a bit brown too. NO OIL – just the oats.

2. Tip the browned/fragrant oats into a heavy saucepan (I like a Le Creuset, but then, who doesn’t?). Tip the milk/water on top and turn the heat on high, until the mixture bubbles. Turn it down to low, still bubbling, just not quite as furiously as before.

3. Get your phone, scroll through some social media for 10 minutes. Make sure you’re stirring the porridge. You can’t walk away from this, you must be present. In the moment, mindful of the Porridge (Yet tweeting about something unrelated) Not me, I’m tweeting about the Porridge.

4. Many schools of thought on “When is it Done?”. This is my School of Porridge: when the bubbles start leaping out of the saucepan expressly to burn you, they’re trying to tell you something. The liquid is mostly absorbed. It sticks together and makes a blobby shape (esp when you spoon it into a bowl later on). You can also try tasting the oats, for “bounce”. Complete mush is not my thing – so I like a little bounce-back on those oats. I think your colon does too. Best not to mention colon in a recipe though.

5. Throw in the salt & stir it up – give it a minute to collect its thoughts …… and then spoon into 1 or 2 bowls.

6. Don’t leave it like that! The winter wonderland of this dish is the juxtaposition between the salty nutty oats and the sweetness of the honey and the tangy creamy yoghurt. Just so you know – “Greek Style” yoghurt from the supermarket is not as good as “Greek” yoghurt made in Greece. Use whatever you can get though – it’s all good. Sometimes, I’m able to fashion the British Isles out of the yoghurt. Not on this occasion, sadly.

Here are some pics to help you through the process – you will be hard pressed to find a better dish for the wintry weather ahead. DO let me know how you get on – I am yet to see Singapore on my WordPress map of world domination. I know it’s hot down there – turn up the aircon! #justsayin Click the “comments” icon at the top of the post. Got to run, I smell popcorn.

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Toast the oats. See them browning at the edge? Jiggle the pan so they don’t burn. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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Yes, it looks like too much liquid to begin with. It’s not. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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I’ve been burnt a few times by the bubbles by now. Off with the heat. See the tidemark on the saucepan? That’s how much it’s reduced down. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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Yes, that is salt. 2 pinches. In it goes. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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Stir in salt and it looks a lot less liquidy now. Let it be, let it be, let it be oh let it be. Sing that song and it’ll be done by the time you are. (Maybe just a verse + chorus) Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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Good? You call that good? That’s not good ….. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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Ta Da! Bon Appetit. Photo: Vortex of Bloggery
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7 thoughts on “Can I have some more, Please? The Great Porridge Renaissance

  1. There is a porridge “cart” at Manly Wharf in Sydney. You can grab it on the go in the AM, and they serve with stewed apples, pears or rhubarb and yoghurt. Happy days.

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    • Hey JBird! Thanks for sharing! Happy V Day! I find you’ve got to be careful with your quantities of porridge. Just like Goldilocks; too much and it puts you in a little coma. Many Manly Ferries docking with a boatload of snoozeheads?

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  2. So much healthier (not that there’s anything wrong with a bacon & egg roll – and a helluva lot right with it too). If you get the whiff of hog in your nostril, nothing else will do. I had a nosey at that site – noice! Enjoy your oats on the starboard side (while it lasts).

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