Savoury Oats (Eggs, Asparagus & Mushrooms)


Savoury porridge. Are you feeling disgusted or intrigued? Either way, just for me, please give it a go. You might surprise yourself.

In this porridge bowl we have mushroom, asparagus, salt, black and white pepper, and two runny-yolked eggs. This combination meaning that you have a lovely, balanced breakfast containing low GI carbohydrates in the oats (they digest more slowly, meaning they don’t spike blood sugar and keep you fuller for longer), a source of protein and healthy fats in the eggs, and one of your ‘5 a Day’ in the asparagus and mushrooms- as well as plenty of vitamins and minerals, which the fat in the egg yolk is going to help the body absorb. This is one super-charged breakfast bowl, and a great alternative if you want to change it up a bit from fruit and nut butter on your porridge. My biggest tip with this dish is not to skip the seasoning: white pepper is amazing with eggs, and the salt and pepper combo is going to give the oats some oomph (they smell great when they’re cooking).

I happened to love this combination of salt and pepper oats, eggs, and veggies- but I’m interested to hear what you think, so let me know in the comments below if you decide to try this. Lets get started…

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Mince Pie Baked Oatmeal

wp-1483011790321.jpgI was in a huge dilemma as to whether to save this post until next year, or to publish it now. Because although Christmas has been and gone, I am still feeling just a little bit Christmas-y. And I also have the remains of a jar on mince pie filling to use up. Also, this just tasted so good, that I felt awful not sharing it with you guys right now.

If you made my Gingerbread Baked Oatmeal, then I guarantee you will love this one. It’s still single-serve, but this time it has all those wonderful Christmas spice, orange zesty flavours, plus plump sultanas and soft cake-like baked oats. The best way to serve this is with cooked apples (you can do this in the microwave- see below ), and hot almond milk…


  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1/2tsp baking powder
  • 40g mince pie filling (this is 2 heaped tbsp;  I used Meridian)
  • 1/8tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of mixed spice
  • 1 drop vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL: hot almond milk to serve (I HIGHLY recommend this), and apple chunks (for the ones in the image above, simply chop the apple into chunks, then microwave on full power for 1 minute until tender. It’s the easier version of poaching)

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Gingerbread Baked Oatmeal (single serve!)

wp-1482414298911.jpgI have to say, this could be my favourite baked oatmeal, ever. It was a bit of an experiment, but this worked out better than I could have hoped. It has that warm and zingy ginger flavour, with cinnamon and mixed spice coming through just slightly- all with some gooey, super-sweet medjool dates. Those dates really transform this dish.

I usually eat my baked oatmeal straight from the dish, straight from the oven- and often burn my mouth. However, with this I made the oatmeal and let it go cold as I had to go get on with my day- then reheated it for lunch, and served it with hot almond milk, and frozen raspberries. And it was extremely delicious. So my recommendation on how to serve this is: in a bowl, warmed up from cold (you can always make it the day before to save on time in a morning) or left to stand after baking for around 15 minutes, and then with hot milk poured over the top. You won’t regret it… Continue reading

Christmas Porridge No.3: Chocolate Orange Oats

wp-1481803920135.jpgThe final Christmas porridge of the series guys (though I may have some more oaty recipes waiting in the wings for you), and today it’s a bowl full of chocolate orange oats…

Many of us will probably remember eating Terry’s chocolate oranges at Christmas, or digging into the Satsuma from our stocking, and then some chocolate coins. With this porridge we’re taking that nostalgia, and making it a) a little more grown up, and b) a little healthier. Although I have to say, I will probably be adding some chunks of dark chocolate or some chocolate chips to this at some point.


  • 1/2 cup porridge oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup boiled water
  • 1/2 large orange (add the rest to a cous cous salad- you won’t regret it!)
  • 1tbsp cacao powder (I used Seven Hills cacao)
  • OPTIONAL: dash of cinnamon, sweetener of choice (I suggest agave, as it doesn’t have much of a flavour to interfere with the other ingredients), 1/2 tbsp. protein powder of choice (I used pea protein), if you really want to make it special – or into a dessert porridge- then some dark chocolate chunks, or chocolate chips

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Christmas Porridge No.2: Spiced Oats & Festive Apple Sauce


Time for the second instalment of the three Christmas porridge posts! You can read my last post for Chocolate, Hazelnut & Pear porridge right here.

Today we’re making some festive apple sauce- featuring russet apple, sultanas, almonds, cinnamon, ginger, mixed spice, and orange juice. Contrary to how that list makes it sound, it’s actually very simple to make. You basically throw everything into a pan and heat it up.

The apple sauce gives you two smaller servings, or one large one; I opted to get two smaller portions out of it, and also added some frozen berries once I’d taken the picture for this post. You can heat the remaining apple sauce up, eat it cold, add it to yoghurt, pair it with vanilla ice-cream…whatever floats your boat. Also, though I added some honey to my oats, maple syrup would also be amazing.

Let’s get another Christmas breakfast on the go…


For the oats-

  • 1/2 porridge oats
  • 1/2 boiled water
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • Pinch of each: cinnamon, ginger, mixed spice
  • OPTIONAL: 2 egg whites (I’m an egg white oats fan, and if you like a good balance of protein and carbs to keep you full you may want to check out my post on them right here) , honey

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Christmas Porridge No.1: Hazelnut, Chocolate & Pear

wp-1481464521141.jpgChristmas breakfast is one of my favourite things about the entire day. In fact, of late I’ve been diving for my breakfast before my presents. My top picks are always either something involving eggs or smoked salmon (or both), shredded wheat with loads of toppings- or, more often than not, a bowl of porridge. But since Christmas is a time for making things that bit more special, I’ve decided to make three different- more luxurious- Christmas  porridges for you over the next week. This is the first one…

Hazelnut butter is a mega-luxury as it’s so expensive, and so as Christmas is a time for pushing the boat out a bit, I like to use it this time of year. Alternatively, you can use whole hazelnuts, which are much cheaper- just chop them, and add them as directed below. If your are treating yourself to hazelnut butter, then I highly recommend Meridian- nothing has matched theirs so far. Chocolate on Christmas morning is something I know many of us enjoy, but this chocolate flavour comes from cacao, making it super-rich and just that little bit better for you, as it is richer in antioxidants. If you aren’t a fan of bitter dark chocolate-esque flavours, then go ahead and add in 1-2tsp of maple syrup to sweeten. Finally, the pear means you get in one of your 5 a day, provides a little sweetness itself, and it works beautifully with both the cacao and the hazelnut.

Now, a little word on the egg whites…these are completely optional. I love egg white oats, and so I added them. The extra protein makes this a well-balanced breakfast, and you can’t actually taste them. The texture just becomes super-thick (which is something I like in my porridge), and your breakfast super-filling. If you’re sceptical then feel free to skip them, or even sub in protein powder if you’re into that. For more on egg white oats you can read my post and recipe here.

Let’s get going…


  • 1/2 cup of porridge oats
  • 1/2 cup freshly boiled water
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1tbsp cacao
  • 1 pear- three thin slices put to one side, and the rest chopped into chunks
  • 1tbsp hazelnut butter (I used Meridian)
  • Pinch of each: cinnamon, ginger, mixed spice (just a little!)
  • OPTIONAL: 2 egg whites, frozen berries, maple syrup (I highly recommend adding the egg whites- this recipe works fine without the berries, but they do add a little colour, and you can read about the maple syrup in my intro)

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Arlo’s Café & Bistro: Review

wp-1476299752207.jpgWhen my flatmates and I moved into our current home I immediately knew that we may not have chosen the best location. Because we live in very close proximity to a great second hand book shop, a mini-supermarket, a frozen yoghurt shop, sushi place, a Starbucks, cake and tea and coffee shop, Indian street kitchen I have yet to try- and Arlo’s. Ah, Arlo’s. This is where my money is currently going.

Arlo is a café and bistro on Brentwood Avenue, in the West Jesmond area. And it does one of the best brunches in the city. It’s decorated in a quirky-cool alpine fashion, with plenty of fairy lights, and blankets in case you choose to sit outside.

Arlo’s opens fairly early in the morning, which is ideal if you’re an early bird, or if – like me- you are someone who wakes up hungry, and get hangry within half an hour. Luckily, the brunch menu is amazing. Although Arlo open as a bistro in the evening- and serve amazing cakes all day long- I haven’t yet eaten there on an evening. So, this review will be centring around brunch. Although my flatmate, also sucked into the Arlo trap, has been for tea, and said the chicken burger more than lived up to expectations.

My personal recommendations from the brunch menu are: the avocado and egg on toast with chilli jam, the veggie brunch, or the hen’s eggs on toast with smoked salmon added. Because you can’t beat good quality toast with proper butter. If none of these sound appealing, then Arlo also make scones, waffles, teacakes, granola, and sausage stotties. The porridge is also something I can recommend, though it could use more berries. Continue reading