cooking fried porridge (gf)
September 12, 2014
Having just spent a week with the fam (literally) on a tiny Hebridean island called Tiree, I thought it fitting to play around with oatmeal. My family are extreeeemely particular about porridge. It’s the only thing my dad insists on taking charge of in the kitchen.
His puritanical view is that the oats have to be pinhead, uncut. He uses water, adds a hefty pinch of sea salt and has it with a splash of cream if there’s any in the fridge. I see it as punishment porridge.
I’m more baby bear — I like mine made with milk and honey.
This recipe is inspired by an old school Scottish tradition of pouring leftover porridge into a drawer and leaving it to cool. It’s then cut up and eaten it on-the-go as the original energy bar. If you’ve read Kidnapped (Robert Louis Stevenson) you’ll know what I’m on about.
Oatmeal was the basis of the Scottish crofters diet, makes sense — cheap and sturdy fuel for slow energy-release. I like to imagine a burly Scotsman knee deep in heather, pulling a slice from his sternum along with a hip flask of whiskey while he’s roaming the highlands.
I know this sounds kind of DISGUSTING but stay with me — I don’t use a drawer to cool the porridge. I used a baking dish, and I fry it in butter. The result is something between porridge, French toast and oaty polenta. It’s one of the most brilliant breakfast discoveries I’ve had, I’m mad for it. So much so that I’m going to list what would be excellent with it:
Raspberries and honey drizzle
Crispy bacon and maple syrup
Yoghurt and berries with a dusting of icing sugar
Caramelised apples and cinnamon
Spiced butter (cinnamon/nutmeg etc) and roasted pecans
Crispy Fried Porridge Slices (serves 4 for breakfast)
200g porridge oats
300ml whole milk (or soy if you’re that way inclined)
grating of fresh nutmeg (optional)
Mix the oats, water, milk, sugar and salt to a pan
Stir on a low heat constantly for about 15mins until thick and creamy. The more you stir, and the lower the heat, the creamier the porridge!
Pour the porridge into a medium sized tupperware container or an oven dish
Leave to cool, then refrigerate overnight
Turn the cooled porridge out carefully - you’ll end up with a beige solid slab of porridge. Slice it up into triangles or squares. Dusting the squares with a little flour prevents them sticking in the pan, if you don’t have a non stick one
- Pan fry in a little oil and butter (or can be fried without if you’re using a non-stick pan and don’t want the extra cals) for about 5 mins on each side, or until golden
Serve with whatever you like. This one has maple syrup
This one has been fried without oil — and has honey and cinnamon