Saturday, 22 November 2014


Recipe: Peanut butter and jam porridge

Time taken: 5 minutes

Ingredients: Half a LEGO cup of porridge oats, a big splash of milk, some blobs of jam and some blobs of peanut butter

 Hiya chefs!

How are you all today? I imagine you’re kicking back and enjoying your weekends. That’s what we’re all up to here! Newcastle’s looking a little cloudy I’d say and we’re still a whole 33 days away from Christmas, but today’s a Saturday so no one can complain. Last night I got 8 hours sleep!! For a stressed out student this is a big, big achievement! I feel like this warrants a display of fireworks and rapturous applause, my parents crying on the sideline. A small awards ceremony.

I’m feeling really well rested and today I feel the theme of my blog post today should be TIME. My absolute favourite thing about the weekend is that time is very different to the week. Suddenly, you have more of it. And you’re not measuring things by an hour until the next lecture… or five minutes before the next metro… or fifty minutes taken to transcribe ten minutes of interview. Gah. You can measure things by when your favourite shows are going to be on TV… and how far through your book you are… and whether it’s light enough to take a walk.

And you definitely have the time on the weekend to cook something unreal. You’re not tired, you’re not rushing out the door, and hopefully you’re not too stressed to enjoy tasting your food for once! I think that half the time we cook things which sensibly use up ingredients that are near to expiring, and we eat them so that we stop feeling hungry, and we tick the meal off in our head as another thing done on our to-do list, and we forget to enjoy the food!! This is such a shame.

So today, I woke up of my own accord with NO ALARM, I padded about getting ready, and I decided to get creative with my breakfast! I’m often a breakfast bore. I like warm, belly-filling porridge. I know exactly how to make it and it always does the job. It gives me a glow like the boy in the ReadyBrek advert and I spring out the door on my imaginary glowing trampoline, like he does. A morning person, ready to face the day.

And porridge is SO CHEAP. Really, I worked out this morning that I use 60g of oats each time and, as a 1 kg bag costs 75p from Asda, that’s 16 servings per bag and it costs me less than 5p per serving. Then the only other ingredient is milk. A 2 litre carton of milk costs £1 and lasts the week so, on top of a lot of cups of the coffee, it makes me 7 breakfasts. So maybe 14p for milk each time I make porridge. SO A BOWL OF PORRIDGE COSTS LESS THAN 20P TO MAKE. Students, listen up.

I make my porridge and stir in a tablespoon of honey and, since my health kick I’ve been chopping up a banana on top. This is a taste sensation. My Instagram is filled with loving shots of my beloved daily, oaty delight.

But, until I’m allowed next week’s food shop money on Monday, I’ve got no bananas and no honey. It’s terrible! This morning I needed a new porridge topping. My flatmates have been telling me for a loooong time that it’s crazy that as a certified nut-loving squirrel I haven’t tried peanut butter. They can’t believe it! So I’ve had a jar in my cupboard waiting for an occasion to try it. And I thought… PB & J porridge?? It was on!

Here’s how you can make yours in ten simple steps:

1. Pour oats into a cup until it’s half-full. I use a plastic cup with LEGO holograms on that I believe came with a McDonald’s Happy Meal. You need about 60 of oats.

2. Pour your oats into a bowl.

3. Add milk to this bowl until the bowl is about half full and your oats are swimming.

4. Give the porridge mix a good stir and pop in the microwave.

5. Heat on full power, uncovered, for two minutes. You may notice that as it cooks the porridge will start to swell around the edges and it’s like a vortex because a big dip begins to form in the middle. Don’t be alarmed; this is ok.

6. Take it out. Stir it up. Put it back in again and heat on full power for another minute.

ChefBeHere Top Tip: Keep an eye on it this time, because your porridge might start to swell so much that it reaches right to the top of bowl. If so, stop the microwave early.

7. Using a tea towel to cover your hands, lift the porridge out of the microwave to safety.

8. As it deflates, dot the top with your peanut butter and jam.

9. Stir like crazy! Make sure your PB&J reach the porridge right at the bottom of the bowl.

10. Serve piping hot and, if you like, with a refreshing glass of orange juice.

And tuck into something that looks a little like this! Well done!

What do you think of your porridge? Is it filling you with a warm glow? Do you feel full? Do you feel fuelled for the day? Did the recipe work in your microwave without it exploding?

I hope you are truly in love with porridge now. Because it’s healthy, it’s easy, it’s cheap and it’s SO GOOD. And I can’t abide people who buy silly, expensive porridge sachets that make you about four sad spoonfuls of thin, rubbishy non-porridge. Just make the real deal, people! It isn’t hard!

And I loved PB&J as a topping! I didn’t really put enough jam on. I definitely under-jammed, sadly. It sort of was lost when I swirled it all together at the end. MORE JAM NEXT TIME. And oh there will be a next time! For indulgent days, this is surely my new porridge topping of choice. It’s lick lipping good. Very mmm. Rather more-ish. Go give it a try!

Start the day safely,



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