Monday, February 10, 2014

april bloomfield's english porridge

After my lovely dinner at Tosca over the weekend, I thought it'd be fun to try out a recipe from April Bloomfield, albeit for something a bit more austere than what I sampled at the restaurant. I've been curious about Ms. Bloomfield's recipe for porridge for a while - I am one of those people who has to have breakfast, every morning, within 30 minutes or so of waking up, so after reading a number of rave reviews of this humble breakfast cereal, I thought it'd be good to try it out.

The recipe calls for equal parts rolled oats and steel cut oats, cooked in a combination of milk and water with a hefty dose of salt. I stood over the stove, yawning and stirring, for about twenty minutes and then, as per the recipe, added a bit of brown sugar to the pot and spooned it out into my bowl. My first thought was, wow, this is really salty. It IS really salty - there's a teaspoon and a half of Maldon sea salt in the recipe. I love salty foods but the next time I make this, I think I'll probably dial the salt back by 1/3. Because I definitely will make this again. The texture is silky but has some chew to it, courtesy of the steel cut oats. I used 1% milk rather than the whole milk that was called for in the recipe because it's what I had on hand and having made it that way, I don't think I'd change it - the recipe still had a pleasant, creamy taste and was perhaps a bit less heavy. This is an oatmeal that really needs no accompaniment, save a splash of cold milk and a sprinkling of brown sugar, making for a warm, satisfying breakfast that I'm already excited to eat again and again.

April Bloomfield's English Porridge
Makes 2 ample servings

1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cups steel cut oats
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 tsp Maldon sea salt (but as I mentioned above, I'd take this down a bit)
2 tbsp brown sugar.

Bring the milk and the water to a slow simmer in a medium sized, heavy bottomed pot then add the oats and the salt. Stir frequently for about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the brown sugar. Spoon into a warm bowl and add a splash of cold milk and a big pinch of brown sugar on top. 

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