‘Pumpkin Pie’ Porridge & a Book Recommendation
I have this terrible habit of buying cook books, marking all the pages of things I want to try, and then never making any of the recipes. But when I had my wisdom tooth removed last week, I got pretty bored of eating cream of tomato soup and yoghurt all day, and suddenly remembered a recipe for ‘pumpkin pie’ porridge I’d been wanting to try for ages. Nice and creamy, and perfectly smooth for a bruised mouth.
I quickly located the correct cook book – Naomi Devlin’s ‘River Cottage Gluten Free’ – and the author has kindly permitted me to share the recipe with you here on my blog. One word of warning in advance – this takes almost two hours to make, so something best prepared the night before unless you’re in the habit of getting up at 5am to prepare breakfast, but it is totally worth it!!
- 2 tsp butter or coconut oil (I used butter)
- 2 sweet eating apples, peeled, cored and rougly chopped into chunks
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 small squash, peeled, deseeded and cut into 2-3cm chunks (about 200g prepared weight)
- 1/2 – 1 tsp cinnamon
- a pinch of ground allspice or mixed spice (I used allspice)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- a drizzle of honey (optional)
- Melt the butter or coconut oil in a large saucepan (I misread the ingredients, by the way, and used tablespoons instead of teaspoons – oops! It was very buttery). Add the apple chunks and sauté over a medium heat until they start to soften, about 10 minutes.
- Add the carrots to the pan, lower the heat and cook, stirring every now and then, for about 10 minutes until they start to soften.
- Add the squash to the pan and cook over a low heat, stirring from time to time, for about half an hour, until everything is soft and starting to colour.
- Pour enough boiling water over the softened veg in the pan to just cover, then sprinkle on the spices. Cover and simmer for about an hour, topping up the liquid during cooking if necessary, bit don’t add too much – you can always thin it down at the end.
- Allow to cool a little, then tip the veg and liquid into a blender (I used one of those hand held blending sticks). Add the vanilla and process until velvety smooth. I couldn’t actually find any vanilla essence, so I added a few gratings of fresh bourbon vanilla from my vanilla mill. Sweeten with honey to taste, if you like.
If you are not eating this straight away, then you should chill it overnight and heat the porridge up in the morning, stirring constantly to prevent sticking. In the book, Naomi also includes directions for making a crumble topping from nuts, linseed and dates, but since my husband is allergic to both nuts and dates we skipped that bit and instead used another seed topping we already had (and I skipped the topping altogether, as I didn’t want any seeds getting stuck in case the wound in my mouth hadn’t quite healed). We also served it with some full fat Greek yoghurt, as suggested. Alternatively you could also serve it with coconut milk.
The pumpkin pie porridge was absolutely delicious! The recipe suggests that it serves three, but the amount was just right for two adults and two children. I just wish I’d made twice the amount, so I could have had the same again for breakfast the next day! I can’t wait to make more recipes from the book – I’ve already made the almond flat bread to go with our Sunday night curry yesterday, and other recipes I’ve bookmarked include huevos rancheros, buckwheat blinis, coffee and walnut cake (sorry, husband) and chocolate éclairs!