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lemon + nutmeg porridge

I wasn’t planning to post two breakfast dishes in a row… nor trump my recently favourited breakfast so soon. But I have been loving porridge with a vengeance this winter – it’s the only breakfast that stops me falling over at 10am – and recently hit on a new flavour iteration. Lemon and nutmeg. Not a combo I would have thought of, had it not been for the memory of a refrigerated lemon cheesecake my Mum used to make. Which featured loads of lemon and a biscuit base with – yep, nutmeg. The result packs citrusy tang with spicy biscuit-like bass notes, a perfect duo to the creaminess of the porridge.

I was never a fan of making porridge with milk. But in the very early days of pregnancy, I (remorsefully) could not stand yoghurt. But milk was fine, so I went with that. And completely fell. So creamy! Anyway, I can eat yoghurt again now, and babe is no doubt loving the super-sized calcium hit. I’ve also been using a mix of five grains from the wholefoods store – which from memory includes rolled oats, wheat, rice, rye and barley – and make a large jar of this mixed with raisins and currants. I add wheatgerm (for folate) and sometimes LSA or linseed meal to the pot when I’m making it. The recipe below is for one serve. Double for two – or make up a large jar of the oat mix using quantities of oats-to-fruit as feels right.

This is a quick weekday breakfast, thanks to the genius bit of kitchen gadgetry that is the microplane. I stupidly held out for ages before getting one, thinking it was just another thing I could do without. Wrong! I use it daily and love it. You’ll need one for the zest and nutmeg – though you could just use a knife and pre-ground spice.

lemon + nutmeg porridge

I use a mix of five rolled grains, but this is just as yummy (and possibly creamier) with all rolled oats. Go the fresh nutmeg if you can get it – and unwaxed lemons if you can find these. Have all your ingredients assembled so you can add the toppings before the lovely steaming porridge cools.


1/2 cup rolled oats (or mixed grains)
1 tbspn wheatgerm
2 tsp raisins
1 tsp currants
a large 1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp fine lemon zest
1/6 whole nutmeg, finely grated

Any of these to serve: yoghurt, honey, toasted sunflower seeds, fresh fruit


Place oats, wheatgerm, raisins, currants and milk in small saucepan and simmer over low heat for about 5 minutes, or until creamy. Stir as you go and keep an eagle eye on things as the milk can bubble quite furiously – you want to avoid that. If you like a more chewy texture, take it off the heat now. For a smoother consistency, cook for a couple more minutes, adding a splash more milk if needed.

Place porridge in bowl and grate the nutmeg over the top. Top with yoghurt, honey, fruit and sunflower seeds. Lastly, run your lemon across the microplane until the yellow flecks are to your liking.

Makes one person deliriously happy for the best part of a morning.

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  1. With a tree full of lemons (actually 2) I will definitely try. Wonder what it will be like with my new Unstabilised rolled oats (which take longer to cook but apparently hold more goodness). And wouldn’t it make two people deliriously happy?! (;

  2. Nyssa says:

    This looks delicious… am going to try it out tomorrow. Yummo.

    Natalie… I have used unstabilised oats before, am currently using biodynamic oats which (similar to unstabilised oats) are more of the original ‘whole’grain. Anything that is closer to the original form has to better for you… I reckon they’re pretty yummy too, and keep you full for longer.

  3. Claudia says:

    Lemon and nutmeg sounds like an unusual combination for porridge. Very interesting. I just came across your blog for the first time and really like it. Have a good sunday!

  4. Megan says:

    Sam, this looks amazing. My boy is away for a week and I struggle with motivation to cook sometimes when I have no one to look after. But this looks like such a good solo Sunday brekkie. I love nutmeg and should probably use it more. I do like being deliriously happy… x

  5. One Small Kitchen says:

    Nat – oh to have a glut of lemons! I’ve never seen unstabilised oats but keen to hear what you think of them. I reckon you could make a small army happy… Alas I’m the only porridge fan here.

    Nyssa – enjoy. Will keep my eyes peeled for biodynamic oats too.

    Claudia – thanks!

    Megan – a perfectly simple feast for one. I don’t usually use much nutmeg either but am sold now!

  6. Edwina Rowan says:

    Thankyou for sharing your lovely recipe (and happy demeanour). Congratulations to you and Kieran on the birth of your little fellow. I hope you will find motherhood very rewarding (but please continue to share your recipes).

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