In a recent article in the New York Times, What’s the Secret to Reaching 111? ‘Avoid Dying,’ but ‘Porridge Is Helpful,’ (3/31/19), Palko Karasz reports that there are more than 14,000 centenarians living in Britain according to the most recent statistics.
The oldest person on record living in Britain is Grace Jones, a woman who turned 112 last September. The two oldest men, Alf Smith and Bob Weighton are 111. Both were born on the same day March 29, 1908. Wow.
Mr. Weighton had “no answer” and no secret to reveal for his longevity. Scotsman Smith, however, ventured a reason (though admitting he had no definitive answer): “Porridge is helpful and having a job you enjoy.”
A few years ago, we shared a recipe for Five Minute Strawberry Rhubarb Oatmeal using rolled oats. Although a delicious and healthy breakfast, especially in this era of sugar laden, packaged cereals, oatmeal using rolled oats is not porridge. To make a porridge with oats, you need to use steel cut oats. So in tribute to Mr. Smith of Perthshire, Scotland, we decided to share this easy to make, in 15 minutes, recipe for porridge.
Fifteen Minute Cranberry/Walnut Porridge (one hearty serving)
Two cups of water
1/2 cup of steel cut organic oats
1/2 to 1 cup of cranberries (fresh cranberries preferable)
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
Handful of organic walnuts
1/4 to 1/2 cup of plain kefir
Bring two cups of water to a rapid boil in a small pot.
Add 1/2 cup of steel cut organic oats and cook over high heat while stirring often for three minutes.
Lower the temperature to moderate heat, and cook for 12 minutes more. With 7-8 minutes left of the total cooking time of 15 minutes, add 1/2 to 1 cup of cranberries and stirring occasionally cook for the final 7-8 minutes. If water is not completely absorbed after the 15 minutes total cooking time, lower the temperature to simmer and cook until all water is absorbed.
Transfer to a small bowl, and sprinkle 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and a handful of organic walnuts.
Moisten with 1/4 to 1/2 cup of plain kefir (which I like to add around the circumference of the porridge).
Enjoy 15-minute cranberry walnut porridge.
(Frank W. Barrie, 4/4/19)