Porridge with Spiced Syrup, Berries and Sunflower seeds
When I wrote Afternoon Tea I included a recipe for Spiced Tea Syrup on page 54 (just in case you have a copy!), fashionable in the Edwardian Era to both sweeten and flavour. Being out of the habit, despite writing this book, a jar has been sitting by the kettle for quite some time and this morning I decided to add it to porridge, alongside the 21st century addition of seeds and goji berries or cranberries. Over 100 years ago meets today and the two marry very well, so well that I intend to repeat my breakfast indulgence.
Porridge is made in so many different ways. The other day I met someone who makes it with a combination of apple juice and water. He then adds cinnamon. The Scottish may make it with water and salt, while I make it with whole milk, more calorific perhaps, but delicious. Making it on the oven, once it has simmered for a few minutes, I place the lid on the pan and leave it for 10 minutes, during which time the oats plump up.
Add the syrup, the recipe for which is below, and whichever sprinklings you like. For me sunflower seeds, goji berries or cranberries are just the ticket.
250g sugar (most types will do)
1 cinnamon stick
1 tbsp cloves
2 blades mace
½ tbsp allspice berries
- Put the sugar and water in a saucepan over a low heat until a syrup is formed, turning up the heat a little if necessary.
- Crush the spices lightly in a pestle and mortar or with a rolling pin.
- Place the spices in a piece of muslin or similar cooking cloth, and tie a string around the parcel.
- Put the parcel in the syrup over a low heat, allowing the flavour it infuse for a few minutes before moving the pan from the heat.
- Pour the syrup into a jar with the spice parcel.
Use as you wish. : )