Feeling your oats? Porridge ideas

Flahavan's porridge oatsI’ve always been a fan of porridge. It’s one of those things that fit in perfectly on a cold morning at the cottage: a steaming bowlful of warm oats, topped with some stewed fruit and a dollop of natural yoghurt is just the thing to set myself and Little Missy up for the day. She eats the regular sort, which I grind up with my immersion blender (always useful but now indispensable) before cooking, but I’ve gotten hooked on Flahavan’s Pinhead Oatmeal this winter.

It takes a little longer to cook than the rolled oats but when you’re up around 6am, time is not exactly in short supply! I use cook mine with half milk, half water (LM gets expressed breast milk, or a little regular milk, plus water in her ground up oats), pop it on the cooker at a low setting and it cooks away by itself, with a couple of stirs from me between getting showered and dressed.

When I’m with it enough to soak the oats overnight it does shorten the cooking time a little but if I was super-organised what I’d do is cook a whole pot in advance, as recommended in Super Natural Cooking and the New York Times (steel-cut oats in America = pinhead oatmeal in Ireland) and reheat as necessary. And then there are porridge toppings. Stewed pear and allspice are popular here, as are apple and dried apricot compote or poached cinnamon plums, always with natural yoghurt and, for the members of the family with more than two teeth, a sprinkling of toasted nuts or seeds.

Porridge makes the best breakfast, being cheap, nutritious, easy – and local. What better way to start the day?



Food writer. Broadcaster. Blogger. Author. Married to Eight Degrees Brewing. Member of the Irish Food Writers' Guild, founder of Irish Food Bloggers Association and co-author of Sláinte: The Complete Guide to Irish Craft Beer & Cider (New Island)

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4 Responses

  1. Kristin says:

    I buy this brand as well and make porridge most mornings in the wintertime. This morning I added a capful of Drambuie to it after reading about the Castlewood House in Dingle making it this way. It was a treat – though next time I might add a little more than a capful. 🙂

  2. I need to get my thinking cap on. I adore porridge.

  3. Caroline says:

    When I was staying at Heaton’s Guesthouse in Dingle last October, right next door to Castlewood House and run by members of the same family, I saw the Drambuie bottle being proffered and thought that was a great idea, especially when accompanied by cream and brown sugar! Something for Christmas morning, perhaps…Me too, George, and isn’t it a great excuse to try our lots of different topping ideas?

  4. Elke says:

    Don’t really like porridge (muumy always gave it to me when I was sick) but I love the Drambuie idea……opens the door for some great ideas. I use oats only in my granola….and there is nothing better than homemade granola…Elke

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