Fried Easter porridge

Photographer: Emma
Serves 6

I must thank my boyfriend for this recipe which I have a sneaking suspicion was one of many he had up his sleeve, at the ready, to woo me with in the early days of our courtship.  This is not to suggest however that his culinary endeavours ground to a halt once he’d won me over (which didn’t take long, I do confess), on the contrary!  They continue with the same measure of gusto with which they began.  Lucky me!

This recipe is inspired by one from the Dunsandel Store Cookbook, a gem of a book with its roots bound in the deep south, which said boyfriend bought for himself as a birthday gift several years ago (we are a match made in heaven!).  Its pages are filled with beautiful watercolour paintings and photographs of life in this wee community-centred town.  Instructions for activities outside of the kitchen are found interspersed throughout the recipes and include ideas on building indoor forts from sheets when in the depth of winter temperatures plunge and only the brave venture outside.  Patterns for go-carts are also included as well as photographs of the stores innumerable canine guests, well-attended poetry evenings and the locals on the hunt for rabbits and pigs. Recipes for which are included on subsequent pages.

I wanted to post this recipe to inspire you, dear reader, to make the most of your precious weekends regardless of whether or not they happen to be long or holiday ones.  Take the time to cook good food to share with the people who are important to you.  Stretch these moments out and make them special.  They are the ones you will remember for years to come.


2 ½ cups oats
2 ½ cups water
2 ½ cups milk
Juice of 2 oranges
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1/3 cup currants
4 tbsp mixed peel
½ tsp mixed spice
½ tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch salt


1. Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan and cook until thick. I ended up cooking mine for 20 minutes or so to make it very stiff. This makes frying the porridge easier in the next step.
2. Spoon the porridge out into a buttered shallow baking dish and smooth surface. Leave in the fridge overnight, or on the bench for a few hours to set.
3. Once the porridge has set, slice into squares, or cut out with cutters to make desired shape.
4. Put a bit of butter into a frying pan and fry the porridge until golden.
5. Plate, top with marscapone and stewed fruit and a drizzle of maple syrup and serve immediately.