it is funny how tastes change. there was a time when i would sneer at the idea of porridge: what eat that upchuck? oh yeah i am quite the foodie.
oh well how wrong i was. since my recent bout of ill health i have become a bit more conscious about the food i eat: how much sugar? how much fat? you are shitting me! (and dear mr. sainsbury's you don't need the government to bring about healthier food – you are big enough to make the changes, just don't want to in case you lose money).
anyway there i was in pret a manger and i thought i really can't have any more cheese, oh ok let's give that porridge a go. whatta y'know i liked it, hell more than that i really liked it.
so now i eat porridge.
one of the many things i can't claim to be is a cook or even vaguely interested in the whole preparing meals process. as far as i am concern food technology has had only three major inventions: fire, sliced bread and the microwave.
but i still know stuff and the stuff i know includes that it shouldn't be impossible to make consistently decent porridge. you just need the right ratios of oats to milk/water or milk and water and cook for a certain length of time. oat so simple - see what i did there? (and that is the closest i will ever come to cooking.)
imagine my surprise when i rock up at gregs the bakers one morning and purchase their porridge. carton felt nice and hot. i was looking forward to it. i kept shaking the pot as i walked to stop it from congealing. i needn't have bothered. when i finally sat down to enjoy it what i was confronted with was a curious asian fusion dish that was miso meets oats. if i had wanted warm milk with bits in i would have asked for it. what i wanted was porridge – a dish that isn't hard to make, a dish that is almost perfect for fast food places to have on hand to dole out to hungry customers.
gregs have obviously decided that the humble porridge needs an upgraded and misoed the hell out of it.
no need to worry plenty of other places do it. there i am on victoria station, train is close to leaving, i know i will try the people at breadbox they are offering porridge. hand over the cash, get the goodies and helter skelter to catch the train. a bit of heavy breathing and adjusting bags and then popping open the porridge container.
not quite porridge – what they are offering is a milky sweet gruel. sure you can hunt around and find some oats you can even try to stir it all up to see if those oats will expand with agitation and fill the carton magic bean style. you can do any number of things and you will still be left with a cooling gruel. i am not knocking gruel – it was the staple diet for many for a long time – it is just that when you a buying one thing and you get something that isn't quite that it is easy to be disappointed.
lesson learnt. stick to pret.
what macdonalds do porridge?
oh ok let's give them a go.