Porridge – The Random Flavour Generator

With Christmas over and the dark, damp months of January and February to get through hot, filling breakfasts are a great way to liven up chilly mornings.

I have to admit I’ve been guilty of using the phrase “about as exciting as porridge” a few times over the years but nothing beats the humble oat as a perfect staring point to the day.

Breakfast can be a sorely neglected meal in this country but studies have shown that those who eat a low fat breakfast are less likely to be overweight than those who don’t.

Oats provide a great source of slow release carbohydrate to keep your energy levels up through the morning and stop you feeling hungry before lunch. As well as this oats have a great list of other health benefits including:

  • Oats contain soluble and insoluble fibre. Both of these help to keep the bowels moving and prevent constipation.
  • The soluble fibre in oats may help lower cholesterol and help reduce the risk of heart disease.
  • The fibre in oats can also help to keep you feeling fuller for longer and make avoiding snacks easier.
  • The fibre in oats may actually help to reduce the risk of certain cancers.
  • Oats are a low glycaemic index food and release their energy slowly. Low glycaemic index foods may be helpful in weight management and can be used to help stabilise blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
  • Oats contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals to help provide part of a healthy balanced diet.

So, after all these good points, why are we not all starting the day with a nice bowl of porridge? Well, truth be told, porridge can seem a bit dull day after day but do not fear, with the advent of the “Random Porridge Generator” below, a healthy hot breakfast need never seem boring again!

Using the basic porridge recipe provided, simply choose one each from the flavour, fruit and sprinkles list to create tasty, healthy combinations day after day. So far our favourites include:

  • Maple syrup, blueberry and chopped mixed nuts
  • Peanut butter, banana and grated dark chocolate
  • Vanilla essence, strawberry and flaked almonds

And would you believe that from these lists alone you can create over 200 different combinations? Feel free to print out this handy fridge poster to help you and your kids come up with ideas – we’d love to hear about your favourite combinations, just post them in the comments section below.  Happy combining!

Flavour:

  • 2tsp maple syrup
  • 1tsp chocolate spread
  • 1tsp peanut butter
  • 2 drops vanilla essence
  • 2tsp fruity jam
  • 1tsp runny honey
  • 1tbsp low fat fruit yoghurt

Fruit

  • ½ chopped banana
  • ½ chopped apple
  • ½ chopped pear
  • 2 chopped tinned peach halves
  • 3-4 chopped strawberries
  • handful of blueberries, blackberries or raspberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1tbsp dried cherries

Sprinkles

  • 2tsp chopped mixed nuts
  • 2tsp sesame seeds
  • 2tsp flaked almonds
  • 2tsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2tsp sunflower seeds
  • 1 crushed amaretti biscuit
  • 1tsp grated dark chocolate

 

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