How to Make Porridge in the Microwave

Kitchen gadgets come and go, but we cannot categorise the Microwave as a gadget anymore. Life-saver maybe, time-saver definitely! Whether you have any feelings about cooking with a microwave or not the truth is when they are used properly, they cook many things brilliantly. This includes oats and more specifically porridge.

Of course, porridge has such a history that it almost feels somewhat incongruous to use such a technical device making a dish that is thousands of years old and has fed whole dynasties – literally!

A Little Porridge History

Before microwaving your oats, it’s nice to consider the background of this breakfast marvel! The word porridge can be traced to the word ‘pottage’ or ‘potage’, the French lexicon for soup. Looking harder, we can see the word ‘pot’ which unsurprisingly connects fairly well to the cooking of our said oats!

The modern association with Scotland and oats is mainly due to the weather and climate, allowing oats to thrive in tough conditions.

Up until the end of the 18th Century, porridge was seen as poor peoples’ food and was often cooked and stored in so-called porridge drawers! This could then be kept and sliced as needed.

Modern Customs

The modern way is decidedly less frugal, and it is pretty common in the contemporary era for Scottish families to cook the porridge with milk and add a decadent spoon of honey!

One tool that has long since disappeared was the ‘spurtle’, a rounded wooden rod kept specifically for stirring the oats.

Championship Porridge

Since 1994 there has been the ‘World Porridge Making Championship’ held in the Scottish Highlands, where porridge chefs from all over the world compete for the much-coveted prize of the Golden Spurtle!

Good Luck

It is said that by stirring only with the right hand and in a clockwise direction will bring good luck to all that sit down for a bowl of warm nourishing oats! So whatever you do, do not use your left hand and never stir anti-clockwise.

Porridge in a Microwave

So bearing all this weight of history on this ‘wee’ cereal somehow undermines using a microwave for eating this ancient wonder food. However, the evidence is clear – it tastes just great so go with the flow!

Microwave cooking method:

  1. Mix porridge oats, water or milk if you prefer, in a suitable breakfast bowl.
  2. Make sure the porridge and water or milk is well stirred, and then microwave for 2 minutes.
  3. Remove from the microwave and then give it another stir. At this stage, you can always add a little more liquid to it if you think it looks too dry.
  4. Serve the steaming hot porridge with sliced banana or any topping of your choice. How about adding a few Chia seeds or topping them with fresh fruit. Mango, apple and pomegranate all work very well!

Top Tips for Buying Porridge

Actually, it is quite extraordinary how complex the nuances of oat production are. There are steel-cut oats, jumbo oats, organic oats and finely rolled oats. The curious thing is that they all look and taste quite different from one another, but all can be used to make a warm, nutritious bowl of porridge. For most people, the favourite is usually ‘rolled oats’ or ‘rolled porridge oats’ for making the modern breakfast we all know and love!

Finally, if you are going to use milk in your microwave porridge, then it will taste nice and creamy if you choose full-fat dairy milk!