World Porridge day has been and gone. We ate Likuni Phala to get into the swing of things. That’s Malawian porridge – four cups of maize kernels and a cup of soya beans with 15 cups of water. TESCO provided maize meal, which was a useful short-cut, and textured soya protein, also known as soya mince. I had intended reducing the soya to a more meal-like consistency in a blender, but I forgot to pack it . First I tried a rolling pin but still ended up with some recognisable pieces of mince. That was when the stick blender came into play.

Next time I’m going to seal the top of the jug with cling film. It wasn’t as bad as when the courgette soup went wrong, but having said that we’re still finding crumbs of soya twenty four hours later.

The day was supposed to be about comparing ourselves with other countries, so I also made oatmeal porridge to compare with the Likuni Phala. Unfortunately, given a choice kids always go for the familiar. Eight out of twelve refused to try the foreign porridge and even the ones who did try it covered it in sugar. From the point of view of comparison, and nutrition, I have delivered better education sessions.

On the other hand we did make sure everyone had plenty of porridge. As many of the group had free school lunches (which always seems to feature a plain grated cheese sandwich in white bread) this was probably a good thing.

After looking at the animals and learning more about how we grow and use wheat (what we refer to as our Seed to Sandwich presentation) it as time for the kitchen session. I’ve been working on a simple scone recipe because it gives us something to spread our home-made jam on. It also, being Hedgerow Jam, allows us to talk about foraging and alternative foods. People who wouldn’t think of trying something new when offered porridge seem happy to eat anything if it’s in the form of jam. The amount of sugar probably helps.

The first time we tried the recipe the mix turned out a bit dry. This time it was a little too soft. A bit of extra flour soon cleared that up. Next time I may get it right.

Next time, I will get something else wrong.

3 thoughts on “Porridge

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