About this recipe: Bored of bland and uninspiring breakfast routines? Why not add some indulgence to your morning with my recipe for Apple and cinnamon sugar snap porridge? This porridge recipe is not only delicious and nutritious, but also an ample pacifier for even the sweetest of tooths. It could work as a dessert! Just watch out for Goldilocks . . . and the bears for that matter! 275 Kcals.
1. If you have the time, and/or patience, porridge oats really love a good soak. You'll notice the increase in creaminess in comparison.
2. Don’t rush the initial grill. The reason behind this step is to give the sugar something to rest on; almost a film. If the surface isn’t hardened, the sugar will dissolve straight into the oats and the lid won’t anywhere near as crunchy. If you overcook the porridge at this stage, and the surface catches under the heat, you can always give the bowl a stir and have another shot at it.
3. Ensure you allow the surface to cool between grilling. If you don’t, the final product won’t have that crucial ‘crunch.’
4. When heating the caster sugar, don’t be tempted to over cook. Perfect crunch relies on the sugar granules not completely caramelising – you should still be able to see the grains if you look closely, and the colour will be a very light golden brown. The 'solidifying' won't occur straight away, and the sugar needs to oxidise away from the heat in order to get really hard (Heston eat your heart out!) and crystalise. You should be able to give it a good tap with a spoon without the surface breaking, once it's ready. If the sugar is overcooked, it will be a lot darker in colour since it has fully caramelised. Whilst this works nicely on a crème brulee, because the oats are still hot in this recipe, the caramel won’t become cold enough to set and the syrup is likely to be reabsorbed into the porridge itself.
You don't need to be a porridge snob here, Oats-so-Simple sachets work wonders, and if you have a super sweet tooth like mine, the golden syrup flavour will prove a hit.
Ditch the apple sauce and cinnamon, and add ginger or nutmeg instead.
Don’t be tempted to substitute the sugar with sweetener. It just won’t work, and quite frankly, defeats the purpose of the whole thing. Yes, I know 15 grams seems like a lot for one person, but with a breakfast as sinless as porridge, even the most cautious of cows has significant room to manoeuvre.
Hi Ninja, thanks for your review. It is certainly possible, though I have had mixed results if I'm honest. I find that the sugar caramelises too easily so doesn't set as hard. You could try using the torch on a really low heat - but this would probably take just as long as using the grill. Let me know how you get on though, and I'll happily tweak my recipe accordingly! :-) - 17 Feb 2011