What Do I Do With Porridge

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I gotta admit, I’m loving porridge now that I’m an adult. I was never much of a fan of porridge as a kid, but then I didn’t really know how to make it taste really good. Then when I started work I began to eat those little packets of oats with flavouring that take 90 seconds in the microwave. By the way, don’t try to eat this on the way to work when YOU are the driver. Tried it. It doesn’t work. Big mess.

As an adult, porridge is all about the topping. And thats how I want to inspire you today – with a variety of simple porridge toppings. Take a look at the toppings I’ve suggested below, or simply create your own. there’s no recipe, there’s no right answer and its all about taste!

Spiced Apple and Sultana

I adapted the apples of an apple pie recipe and used the spiced apples for my porridge. This also works nicely when you add dates rather than or as well as the sultanas. I cooked the apple slices with water, ground cinnamon, a few whole cloves (which I removed before eating), some sugar (to taste – if you like it sweet put more in, or less if you don’t want it to be so sweet, or it may be based on the sweetness/tartness of the apples you’re using) and a splash or two of lemon juice. Add the sultanas at the beginning of the cooking if you want them to be plumper, and add them at the end if you don’t. This is also a great topping for pancakes.

Strawberries, Honey and Walnuts

Simply slice some fresh strawberries which have been left out of the fridge to come to room temperature (they are sweeter this way) and serve them on top of the porridge with a few crushed or roughly diced walnuts and a drizzle or two of honey.

Apricot and Cinnamon Sugar
I went all out this day and had the apricots, cinnamon sugar,
grated apple AND sliced almonds.

I saw this version at a buffet breakfast I went to. Mix a teaspoon of cinnamon with a few teaspoons of white table sugar and sprinkle over the hot porridge.Then, thinly slice the dried apricots and add these. Yum! If you add grated green apple to this mix it is extra delicious as well.

Peaches and Brown Sugar

I make my porridge plain so that I can add the right amount of sugar on top at the end where I can better control and better taste how much sugar I have added. This topping is a great example of this. Add a teaspoon or two of brown sugar to the hot porridge first, then add the sliced or canned peaches on top. The brown sugar should have melted by the time you’ve added the peaches and taken your plate to the kitchen table. Dig in! This is my absolute favourite porridge topping.

Sliced Banana, Dates and Almonds/Walnuts

I really, really hate warm banana, so I always add banana at the end of the cooking process. In this version I add the sliced bananas, then the sliced or diced dates and then the almonds or walnuts at the end. Crush a handful of the nuts in a teatowel by bashing it a few times with a meat mallet or a rolling pin. The more you bash, the finer the nuts get.

Stewed Dried Fruit

My hubby saw this recipe once on a TV show about quick meals to make while camping, so this is a very versatile recipe. Simply pile a handful or two or three of your favourite dried fruits (apples, apricots, sultanas, peaches, figs, dates, etc) into a pan and add water and some spices (I used some whole cloves which I removed before eating and cinnamon or mixed spiced). Cook it till the fruit have swelled and the liquid has become more syrupy. You can also add in a few squeezes of orange juice when you do this to give it another flavour boost. You can simply eat the fruit as is, on top of yoghurt and especially on top of warm porridge on a winters morning.

So, have I tempted you to make some porridge tomorrow?

What’s your favourite porridge topping?

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