Make no mistake, I am definitely not a morning person. Even though at the moment I wake at 4:40 am three times a week for work, My body, mind and soul want to be awake at 11:00pm and sleep in every morning.
To make matters worse, is the fact that with the change of season it is getting quite chilly in the mornings. There is however, one aspect of the chilly mornings on my days off that I look forward to, breakfast!
I am very much a breakfast person, the reason I wake so early for work is so that I can sit down with a coffee and breakfast before leaving for work. Setting myself up for the day, so to speak.
On days I wake early for work, time is of the essence when it comes to my routine. After all, I really do not like waking so early, so every minute counts. So on such days, breakfast consists of a simple bowl of cereal and a pod machine coffee.
However, this routine very much changes on chilly mornings when I have the time to indulge, in a relaxing and comforting breakfast of porridge and tea.
Now I know for many people this sounds quite abhorrent, stodgy porridge and watery tea. However, done well, it becomes a wonderful and delicious warm hug in the morning.
Neither a comforting bowl of porridge, nor a pot of tea can effectively be made in an instant. Both take a little time to do right and this is part of its restorative properties.
You see, part of the ritual includes both the time to make them and then the time to sit and enjoy them in a relaxed fashion. Allow at least half an hour in the morning, more if you have the time for this contemplative breakfast ritual.
Most porridge that I see is unappetizing and stodgy. As such, I can fully appreciate just why so many people find it unappealing. When done wrong, it becomes a coagulated bowl of chewy and extremely bland oaty lumps.
For me, a good bowl of porridge is velvety and luxurious, well seasoned with a touch of sweetness whilst containing added textural elements. I make my porridge with a vastly different liquid to oats ratio than most. Most recipes are closer to 1 part oats to 2 parts liquid, whereas my recipe is closer to 1 part oats to 5 parts liquid. (Recipe to follow.)
On a cold winters morning, a steaming bowl of velvety porridge, accompanied by a pot of good quality tea is the perfect start to the day. The porridge and tea are like a warm hug, comforting and fulfilling. the time taken to make them allow you to waken fully for the day and then, sitting down and enjoying them gives the opportunity to relax and de-stress fully before the day begins.
My Porridge Recipe (For 2 people)
Add all ingredients except the banana to a small saucepan and place on a low to medium heat on the stove. stir the pot regularly especially as it boils and thickens. When it begins to boil, turn the heat down to a slow bubbling simmer and stir more frequently to prevent it sticking to the bottom and burning.
The act of stirring actually helps to activate the starch and produces a creamier porridge.This should take about 8 minutes. In the meantime, cut up your banana and make your pot of tea.
The goal is a porridge that is not too thick, a consistency that when hot will easily pour of the spoon while not being too watery.
After about 8 minutes you may need to add some more liquid, adjust the salt or sugar to taste. Now add your coarsely chopped banana, and stir for another 30 seconds over the heat.
You should now be ready to serve, so sit down with your pot of tea and have a relaxing start to the day.
Divorced and nearly 50 I rediscovered who I was.