Quick question for you – the most important meal of the day – what is it? (let’s just pretend you didn’t read the title of this post). The famous mantra is probably the first thing that springs to mind. Yes, breakfast – it may well be ‘the most important meal of the day’, but it’s also the first one we tend to drop when we’re in a bit of a hurry, too tired or will make do with half a slice of toast hanging out of our mouth when we dash through the front door. Whatever your reason or excuse, I think it’s fair to argue that we don’t make the most of this meal.
Yes, there’s that old, annoying bane of our lives rearing its head again – lack of time. Weekday mornings aren’t exactly known for their relaxed, laid back vibe. And even if we do our darndest to persuade the offspring to sit down and eat up all that bowl of cornflakes or Weetabix, how many of us join them at the table?
We’re back to the whole eating as a family thing, aren’t we? Don’t worry, I’m not going to bang on about this again…too much, although you can’t deny the benefits of taking ten minutes out of your morning routine to join your children for a bit to eat. But, as with every meal time, how do you make it enticing and well, edible?
I have to admit, the prospect of a soggy mound of Weetbix of a morning isn’t one that gets my taste buds excited.
So I’m going to spend the last half of this post talking about a way you can make breakfast palatable again. It might not be everyone’s cup of tea…or bowl of cereal, but I feel I should sing the praises of porridge.
I, for one, think it’s delicious. And so do my children, even more so, judging by the speed with which they wolf it down. It doesn’t take long to prepare – a few minutes heating it up on the hob or in the microwave. It can be as healthy as you want it to be (with water….anyone?), or as deliciously unhealthy. But let’s face it, the benefits far outweigh any damage done by covering it in golden syrup – a bowl of oats and milk gives that slow release of energy that is very much required in the morning, as well as plenty of fibre AND keeping you full until lunch. What other cereal warms you up so satisfyingly when it’s cold and frosty out? I bet you never thought you’d be dreaming of porridge while you shelter from the, er, late March blizzards.
If you want even more reasons to partake of the porridge, well, it can help you hit your family’s five-a-day target, despite being neither fruit of vegetable itself. No, it’s not got magical powers, but pretty damn close – you can add/mix/hide as much fruit in it as you want in it. I always struggle with eating apples and the like on cold days, so this gives me the ideal opportunity to feel much less guilty about that.
One of the best things about the wonder-cereal – it’s cheap. There’s really no harm in picking the supermarket value bag of oats over the posh branded box. You can leave your pricey sugary squares/hoops/any other shapes imaginable – give this family some piping hot porridge with bananas, cinnamon and honey any day of the week.
And with the money saved, you can have a fry up at the weekend. A healthy (ish) one, of course…