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Scott`s Porage Oats

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Scott's Porage Oats can be prepared quickly and easily in the microwave! They can also be prepared on the stove. "Since 1880 we have been harvesting and milling Scott's Porage Oats here in Scotland. We use only the highest quality oats uniquely milled and rolled thicker to create our special taste and texture - the true taste of Scotland. Scott's Porage Oats are quite simply the Best Scottish-milled oats you can buy, milled like only we know how."

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      15.03.2010 17:41
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      Healthy and tasty what more can you ask for?

      Porridge the pain of many peoples life's, we all realise its healthy but why, why oh why does it taste so bad. Well I think I have cracked the way to make it taste a lot better up to a point where I can now actually enjoy a bowl of porridge in the morning. My method is using Scott's porage oat's and largely following the instructions on the side of the pack for cooking it in the microwave. After cooking 40g of Scott's oats with 275ml milk of your choice, (I use fully skimmed). Add one tablespoon of golden syrup and a handful of raisins and what you have is not only one of the best porridge combinations there is but also a great breakfast choice that I can now not resist. I have literally caught the health bug.

      Anyway Scott's as a porridge oat is one of the most widely known brand of porridge and easily one of the best outstripping the flavour of supermarkets own brand porridge in the way it will actually taste of porridge rather than chemically sprayed product.

      Another advantage of the Scott porridge oat is its promise that it will reduce a persons cholesterol level with the molecule beta glucan in a dosage of 47% of a recommended daily allowance that has been scientificly proven to reduce cholestrol if taken daily.

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      12.03.2010 01:21
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      Scott's Porage Oats - warming oaty breakfast.

      The more reviews I do on here, the more I notice foods that I associate with my childhood. Scott's Porage Oats are one of these, but for me the spelling of porage seems wrong, as I have always spelt it porridge!

      I am not sure how popular this item is south of the border, but for me it was a regular winter breakfast when I was a child. I still enjoy the occasional bowl, but my oldest son is the only other person in the house who enjoys it.

      Scott's Porage Oats come in a strong, thick cardboard package with a very hunky Scotsman in a kilt on the front. When you open the box, you are met with an oaty smell, which isn't that exciting. On inspection, the contents are far from exciting either, quite simply because they are raw oats. It does actually look like something you should feed some small rodent-like creature on!
      Looks can be very deceiving though.

      To make a couple of really thick bowls of porridge, I add a cup of oats to a pan, then pour in a cup of water and a cup of full fat milk. Slowly bring this to the boil and as it starts to boil add a good amount of salt. To be honest, I'm not sure how much salt I add but it's likely enough to give me a heart attack! When it boils, the porridge gets really thick and smells creamy, but still doesn't look that attractive. I pour mine into a bowl, add enough milk to cover it and then taste for saltiness. I will add more salt if necessary. There are strange people out there who add sugar and honey and other wierd and disturbing extras, but I don't want to talk about that!

      Porridge, not surprisingly tastes oaty and with the addition of full fat milk, it also tastes creamy. It is really filling and it does put a good lining on your stomach, which should keep you satisfied until lunch. There really is nothing to beat it on a cold winter's morning, when you have to go out into the big, cold world.

      One serving of porridge oats contains 265 calories.

      Oats contain a special type of soluble fibre which can help lower cholesterol levels and help maintain a healthy heart (not with all the salt I add it won't!)

      Scott's Porage Oats are available in Tesco in a 1kg box for £1.50 and a 1.5kg box for £2.57.

      A 1kg box contains about 22 servings according to the box, which would make it very good value. I do buy even cheaper oats than this for baking with, but would never make my breakfast from anything other than the Scott's brand.

      It just wouldn't be the same, but I do wish they would spell porridge properly!

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        08.12.2009 11:44
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        Scott's porage oats- yum!

        Considering I am eating these right now for my breakfast I think they deserve to have a review written on them! My bowl is steaming hot right now so I need to leave it to cool down anyway!

        A little history

        Scott's Porage Oats have been milled at the Uthrogle Mills in Cupar in Fife, Scotland since 1888, the company was based in Edinburgh. Sales of porridge oats are higher in Scotland than in the rest of the UK, with Scott's Porage Oats taking the highest brand share- wow!

        Appearance

        These come in a 1kg cardboard box which is great. The box does not have a plastic bag in like other to hold the cereal in, the oats are loose inside the box. There is a little flap on the side which you can get the oats out of a lot easier! On the front of the packet there is a man throwing a shot put dressed in a kilt in the middle of a field along with the Scott's logo! On the back of the pack there is a recipe that you can make with the oats- flapjacks! On the sides of the pack, it tells you how to make these and nutritional information!

        The oats are golden in colour and quite small in size just like normal porage oats with millions in the box.

        Smell

        The smell of this is quite sweet obviously enhanced when you add milk or sugar. They smell Oaty and very tasty.

        Taste

        They are quite soft in texture and a little gloopy which is not too good. See: http://i.telegraph.co.uk /telegraph/multimedia/archive/01382/Porridge_1382516c.jpg.
        I added sugar and sultanas to mine which taste so great!

        Price and Place

        These are sold in supermarkets for around £1.65.

        Nutritional Information

        Per Bowl 40g:

        142 kcal
        4.4g protein
        3.2g fat
        3.6g fibre

        These taste great and I would rate them 5/5- excellent quality!

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          12.11.2009 20:37
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          Great for breakfast or a quick snack

          I have just discovered a fantastic product - Scott's So-Easy Microwaveable Porage Oats. They are produced by Scott's - the only porage oats I ever buy and come in handy little packets already measured out for your to put in a bowl and just add milk before placing in your microwave for 3 minutes (a 800W microwave).

          As we all know, a bowl of porage is a good healthy start to the day, oats contain a special type of soluble fibre which when eaten as part of a health low fat diet can help reduce cholesterol and help maintain a healthy heart.

          The packets come in a box showing the kilted highlander on the front and come in two varieties - original and syrup swirl. When made as instructed with 200ml of milk the original contains 204 calories and the syrup swirl 251 calories. There are either 10 or 12 packets in the box depending on which variety you get. I have tried both varieties and must admit that I prefer the sweeter syrup swirl variety but then I so like to have honey on my porage - I have a sweet tooth.

          Added to the oats is soya lecithin this is to minimise the contents of your bowl boiling over in the microwave and it seems to work. Once mixed and placed in the microwave you can just leave it to cook without having to open every minute and stir, like you do with traditional rolled oats which to tend to boil over if not stirred every minute.

          I like this product and for a quick nutritious breakfast it is great, however I would say that the consistency of the heated porage is a little thin and runny and also very smooth. The big advantage is that you do not have a horrible porage pan to wash!

          Overall I do prefer traditional rolled oats cooked in the traditional way on the stove, but for speed this is great and the teenagers like them too and it is easy for them to make as a quick snack. They would not bother to make a pot of porage on the stove!

          I asked my son recently if porage was the new cous cous but he said don't be silly - please read my earlier review onSun Grown lemon and corriander couscous - which he still loves best of all for a quick snack.

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            27.10.2009 13:00
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            Great breakfast.

            As I get bigger with first baby seem to be wanting to write more and more reviews about food - strange that!

            Scott's porage oats have long been a favourite of mine. Having had horses most of my life I am used to getting up early - mucking out, riding and then coming in, freezing cold and hungry for a hot bowl of porridge.

            Can't ride due to baby at the moment but still having this most days.

            In the early stages of my pregnancy this was the only breakfast that I could keep down so had it almost every day for 16 weeks!

            Anyway, less about me - more about the product.

            What is it?
            Quite simply it is oats - and that is about it. There is no added sugar, preservatives, salt or anything else that could be bad for you - just 100% rolled oats.

            Cooking
            Either on a stove - add milk / water and cook until the desired consistency is reached. I will not give a time on this as I like my porage to be well cooked and not too runny but I know that there are those who like it more solid.

            Microwave - for 45g of porage add a cup of milk / water (again personal taste takes preference!) Cook for two minutes - stir and then do for another minute or so!

            Couldnt be easier.

            Serving
            Now porage may seem boring to some of you, but as a porage addict there are lots of variations that you can have.

            For a decadent breakfast add double cream and either golden syrup or black treacle!

            Or just add sugar / sweetener.
            Or add dried / fresh banana - raisins, prunes etc to make your own fruit porage.

            Or add cinnamon, honey and banana

            I could keep going but I truly believe that your imagination is the only limit.

            Is it good for you?
            YES - (well unless you add too much double cream and golden syrup!).

            Per 45g serving with 340 ml of semi skimmed milk you will get 320kcal, 42.3g of carbohydrate, 16.5g of protein, 9.4g of fat and 0.1g of sodium so very healthy. And of course if you are on a diet you can just reduce the milk that is used and make with water instead.

            Porage has a very low glycaemic index which means that you burn it very slowly keeping you full for longer. I must say that if I have porage for breakfast I never snack in the morning and can keep going most of the day. I have really noticed this while pregnant - toast /cereal in the morning means I am starving by 10.00 - but with porage still going strong at midday!

            Other ideas
            Of course if you don't want just porage you could make flapjacks with them - or lots of other recipes from sweets to main courses and back again.

            Why Scott's porage oats?
            These are my favourites, probably because I had them as a child and I love the packaging. The shotputter wearing his kilt makes me smile in the morning!

            Stockists and price. Any supermarket - prices range from around £1.20 for a kg box up to £1.80 depending on where you go. So if you make a serving of 45g a 1kg box will make 22 breakfasts. If you pay £1.20 this is a bargainous 5pence per breakfast!

            Overall
            The best breakfast - warms you up and keeps you going all morning, my personal favourite!

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              04.03.2009 20:17
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              Eating porridge oats is an investment in your future health and well being.

              Scotts Porage Oats really is a Superfood.

              Its key benefits are:

              It lowers cholesterol.

              Statistically, regular consumption of it significantly lowers the risk in later life of stomach and bowel cancer .

              It is very filling and unlike many foods because it contains complex carbo-hydrates the energy is released into the body at a slow and steady rate meaning you will not be hungry for a while and you will not have blood sugar highs and lows.

              It can be made with water if you can't afford or don't have any milk.

              It is high in dietary fibre, protein and minerals.

              You can add salt or sugar depending on your taste.

              You can add berries, nuts, raisins, banana and various other fruits for extra flavour and extra nutritional value.

              It is a very cheap source of food. This brand is clearly not the cheapest available but it is renowned for its high quality and consistency of product. Perhaps having the branded box in your cupborad will also encourage you to eat it. It would be pure psychology if this effect happened but it would be a good thing as often we buy healthy food and then just ignore it or forget to eat it.

              This review is also posted on www.ciao.co.uk
              under my user name bella6789

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                16.12.2008 13:34
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                Top-quality porridge oats.

                I suppose I could put my *ahem* granite-hard Caledonian exterior down to one thing above all others: a childhood that involved scoffing copious amounts of porridge. It was a winter activity mainly, with Sugar Puffs and Frosties taking over the breakfast responsibilities during the warmer months, but it was one that was accompanied by full-fat creamy milk and sugar which does kind of suggest that I gave up wearing shorts more than a few years ago. It was almost something of a patriotic duty, even if beefy Georgian wit Samuel Johnson once described oats as "A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people."

                I still regularly indulge my porridge craving, and my gloop of choice for the last couple of years has been Tesco's "Scottish Porridge Oats", a tasty product that is well worth its current 80p per kilo price tag. Tesco also does 'Value' bags of rolled oats but I avoid them, feeling that the uber-low price might be down to the fact that horses have first refusal. But the granddaddy of porridge oats, and the brand of choice for my mum way back when, was "Scott's Porage Oats", so, keen to find out how it compared to my current brand of choice, I recently bought a box.

                £1.45 will currently get you a one kilo box in Tesco (two for £2.50) and on first examination the box is reassuringly familiar, with the same brawny kilted shot-putting Scotsman out front that I remember from days of yore. The 100% rolled oats inside are certainly bigger and more substantial than my current product of choice, so it was with keen anticipation that I set about preparing this re-enactment of a Scottish taste experience of old.

                The box declares that a standard serving can be prepared by mixing 45g of oats with 220ml of milk or water (or a combination of both) but I've always found that a perfect mix can be achieved with the easier-to-remember formula of one part oats to two parts liquid. An average-sized coffee mug half filled is an ample part measure for adults. The traditional cooking method is simply a matter of mixing the oats and liquid in a pot, placing the latter on the hob, adding a pinch of salt and bringing all to the boil. Once this has happened the porridge is gently simmered for a minute or two before serving. However, this method has always resulted in the sticky pot from hell (for me at least) so thank heaven for the more brisk microwave method.

                This method is simplicity itself: Mix the porridge as above, put into a bowl, microwave on full power for three minutes then leave to sit for a minute or two. The first time I tried this more porridge ended up on the inside of the microwave than in the bowl so stir two or three times during the cooking process.

                *****

                Allow the porridge to cool for a few minutes before tasting. A piping-hot bowlful may be cheering on a cold winter morning but it also results in a numbed tongue that is unable to fully savour the taste of the oats.

                I prepared my sample bowlful using the oats/water measure recommended on the box and I quickly noticed that the end result was very thick, almost gelatinous. I therefore added slightly more water on subsequent occasions and achieved a smoother and more satisfying mixture.

                The taste was excellent, with the oats, although nicely softened, still pronounced and satisfyingly bulky. It was nutty and smooth with none of that slightly bitter aftertaste that comes with cheaper oats. We were clearly dealing here with a quality grain! Poor-quality oats tend to melt away during the cooking process resulting in a puréed goo that has no sense of fibre and fails to give that satisfying feeling of having done your colon a big favour. All in all, the 'Scott's Porage' taste is as good a simple porridge taste as you'll find and it's good to know that the old product is still holding strong.

                *****

                People eat their porridge in different ways but I prefer it simple and straightforward, a straight combination of oats and water with a pinch of salt and a light sprinkling of sugar. For a more creamy taste use milk as the liquid (partly or fully) rather than water and top with a further splash if you so wish. Full fat milk will make the creamiest and most delicious combo, perhaps with a little golden syrup mixed in, but in these censorious times such a breakfast must be made and eaten in secret to prevent your immediate arrest by the health police. Nonsense aside, a little of what you fancy now and again usually does more good than harm so indulge freely.

                *****

                The standard serving described above (without sugar) has 160 calories, with that figure rising to 234 calories if semi-skimmed milk is used instead of water. The fat content is 3.6g, of which 0.7g is saturated (using semi-skimmed milk, the values are 3.8g and 0.9g respectively). The fibre content of 4.1g is around 20% of an adult's recommended daily intake.

                *****

                There are many oat cereals around these days, cereals of varying quality and with varying degrees of added sweetness, but for pure unadulterated 100% porridge oats then those offered by Scott are up there at the top of the oat heap. Would I switch from my common-as-muck Tesco nosebag to Scott's pricier box? That's a tricky one. "Scott's Porage Oats" are certainly of better quality and possess a meatier, more traditional taste, but I actually like the taste of my cheapo gloop and am inclined to stay with it. I guess I will go posh with Scott's podge now and again, just to fly the flag (the stuff is milled just fifteen miles from where I live) and give my colon a treat, but as it is considerably more expensive than my current brand I think I'll make do with that for the time being.

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                  17.11.2008 23:04
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                  A nourishing and easily prepared breakfast cereal..ideal in many recipes too.

                  Scotts Porage Oats are milled in Cupar ,Fife.Scotland,and have been since 1888.
                  For as long as I can remember the packet has always had the familiar picture on the front,the poised Highland Shot-putter in the grain field.
                  During the latter part of the 1990`s Scott`s ran a successful advertising campaign featuring the actor Rory Mc Cann.The advert is posted on YouTube if any of you can`t remember it.
                  Scott`s oats are rolled thicker and kilned gently to give that individual taste.
                  The oats contain soluble fibre and if are eaten as part of a healthy diet can lower cholesterol.Oats are also a valuable source of Vitamin B complex,rich in nutrients and help keep balanced blood sugar levels.

                  Porage is a great favourite in our house,but we have different ways of cooking it.
                  My porage is made with half milk,half water, cooked in a small saucepan on the hob,poured out onto a warm plate,sprinkled with Castor sugar and then milk is poured around the edge of the plate.
                  My partner prefers his made in the traditional way,cooked in saucepan with water then just put in a bowl and lightly sweetened.

                  I'm sure that many of you cook porage in the microwave,its a quick and easy way and leaves no messy saucepans to clean !

                  Scotts oats may be a bit dearer than others,and far more expensive than Supermarket own brands..but the proof of the pudding is in the eating,they have a good texture,unlike some which tend to be gritty even when they are cooked.
                  Scotts are consistent with the quality of their oats and I haven't ever found any that make porage as well as these.
                  The oats are also brilliant used in many recipes..flapjack,toppings for fruit crumbles,cookies and different types of bread.

                  Priced at around £1.20 for a 500 gram box.

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                    05.10.2008 21:19
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                    Scotts Porage Oats - nothing added

                    As the days draw in and the mornings have a definite autumnal nip in the air I have begun to turn to Scotts Porage Oats for my breakfast.

                    Scotts Porage Oats are made from 100% pure natural oats...nothing added at all. The oats are grown in Scotland. Oats are ideally suited to the Scottish climate. They do not require as much sun as other cereal crops and can withstand more rain.

                    Scotts Porage Oats have been made in Scotland since 1880 and it is claimed that they only use the highest quality oats and milling processes.

                    Each grain is carefully selected so that only the best oats go into the pack.....The oats are rolledand are gently kilned to create the distictive porage oat taste.


                    The oats come in a rather distinctive box which hasn't changed much over the years and is primarily blue in colour. It sports a rather handsome looking man on the front complete with kilt, vest and a shot in his hand!

                    The porage can be prepared either using the microwave (my preferred method as it does not seem to be so messy as cooking by pan) or by the traditional cooking method in the pan.

                    To microwave you just need to mix 45grams of oats with 310 ml of milk. Stir and microwave on high (650w) for 4 minutes. Leave to stand for two minutes after microwaving. Don't eat it too soon as you can easily burn your mouth / tongue!

                    Traditionally it is served with either sugar or salt to taste. However, I like to stir in a little honey to sweeten it. You can add fruit to it if you like.... my children like it with raisins..

                    For the traditional cooking method use the same amounts and stir, then bring to the boil for 6 minutes stirring occasionally.

                    Each serving contains 53% of the 3 grams of soluble fibre each day to help maintain a healthy heart. A 45g serving contains just 160kcal, 265 with the milk.

                    The product is best consumed within 2 months once opened and is best kept in an airtight container.

                    What are the benefits of Scotts Porage Oats then? Firstly they taste very good and are very filling. Oats are very low on the Glycaemic Index. This means that they are slow in releasing energy . The complex carbohydrates in oats helps to balance sugar levels and leaves you feeling fuller of longer.

                    They are also very low in calories and fat which makes it ideal if you are watching your weight or trying to lose a few pounds....,

                    Indeed, they are good healthy breakfast for everyone. They are very rich in fibre and protein and have many nutritional benefits. Studies have revealed that oats can lower cholesterol and reduce high blood pressure. Oats provide soluble fibre called beta glucan which acts like a sponge during digestion. It is said to soak up and remove cholesterol from the body.

                    David Henderson from Montrose, Britain's longest living man lived to the great age of 109. When questioned about his longevity he paid tribute to his daily humble bowl of porridge.

                    According to TNS market researchers oats are now Britain's second favourite breakfast cereal.

                    In addition to being a very good breakfast cereal, oats can be used to make flapjacks and in the topping on fruit crumbles.

                    There is a recipe on the box itself...The one on my particular box is for apple-berry crumble pie and it looks decidely delicious too. This is number 3 recipe so there must be at least two more!!

                    For just £1.20 for a 500 gram box, this is an economical and nutritious breakfast cereal ideal for the winter months.

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                      23.09.2008 01:14
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                      11/10

                      I love Scott's Porage Oats, and it has to be done in a particluar way. I have never tried it the 'Scottish way', you know with salt.

                      Here is how I make porage, whether or not it is Scott's Porage oats (and yes that is how I have always spelt the word).

                      Get a cupful of oats and a pint of milk.

                      Put the oats in saucepan and just a little more than cover with milk. Bring to the boil, stirring, but don't let it go all the way. While it is coming to the boil get a flat bottomed bowl if possible, like a soup plate. Sprinkle a thin layer of sugar on the bottom of the plate. If you can't get a flattish bowl, wipe the bowl's inner surface with a little milk and sprinkle the sugar onto this so that it sticks to the inside of the bowl.

                      As the oats and milk mixture approach the boil add a little more milk, and repeatedly let it almost boil and add a little more milk, always stirring, and on a low heat. You are aiming to keep adding a little milk and stirring till you get a smooth texture

                      This slow cooking and gradual addition of milk will allow the oats to swell and will smooth out the texture, but DON'T let the mixture go so runny that the milk won't evaporate away - you are aiming for a thick smooth mixture. When you get this consistency pour the porage into your flat bowl and immediately coat the top of the porage with sugar, which will turn into a lovely melted clear syrup.

                      Put the bowl on the windowsill to cool a little, this will also solidify the porridge into a kind of smooth thick pancake.

                      Then add cold milk and eat!

                      This, I am assured, is the proper Scottish recipe, for Scots are known to carry a sweet tooth inherited from their Auld Alliance with the French.

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                        06.05.2008 10:58
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                        Fantastic healthy breakfast food at a great price

                        Scott's Porage Oats were a familiar feature of my childhood, and have always stuck in my memory, partly because of the very distinctive scotsman in his kilt on the packet, and partly because I tried to spell porridge in a spelling test at the age of nine the way they do on the packet (porage) and my teacher marked it wrong. That really confused me!

                        But though I travelled through my teens and twenties eating chocolate croissants and black coffee for breakfast, the arrival of my own children triggered the porridge bug in me once more. Both my little children love porridge, and now I make enough for all three of us and we all start the day with a bowl of Scott's oats, made with full cream milk for them, and half semi-skimmed, half water for me!

                        I personally love the thick-milled variety - they give the porridge a great texture - and I have never come across another brand that does thick milled oats, so I'm a Scott's fan! They do 'ordinary' porridge oats too, which are smaller and create a porridge with a more even texture.

                        One of the great innovations in porridge preparation in modern times is the microwave - yes you can make your porridge oats in a saucepan for 5-10 minutes, then soak the pan for the next three hours! - but you can also put the required amount in a pyrex jug or bowl with milk or water, pop it in the micro for 5 minutes while you jump in the shower and hey presto! - perfectly cooked oats, ready to eat, and no nasty pan to wash!

                        Actually I prefer them microwaved - they come out less glutinous and gloopy in texture, but that's personal preference. Cook them how you will - I have a friend with an aga who puts hers in overnight very very low (like cooking a milk pudding I suppose).

                        Scotts comes in a cardboard package with no metal or plastic attachments so it is dead easy to recycle, and a rather amateurish pouring spout on the side of the packet that isn't brilliantly designed in my view, but the alternative would be a metal spout, which would cost more to manufacture and be harder to deal with recycling-wise, so I'll let them off. You have to tear a sort of cardboard door on the side of the packet, and tuck in a flap to close again. It's not terrible, but I find it hard to open and inefficient to close.

                        The porridge is availalbe in major supermarkets and costs £1.16 in Tescos for a 1kg box. The thick milled ones sometimes cost a few pence more (£1.24 in my local supermarket). It has been milled in Scotland since 1888 and is available to be shipped all over the world - clearly a lot of our American and Canadian cousins are prepared to pay for a wee taste of haim. They also now make a "so easy" range in one-bowl sachets designed for the microwave, but I find the regular one cheaper and it does the same job. Actually Scott's is now owned by Quakers, so that is perhaps why I think the ordinary version of Scott's oats and Quaker oats taste the same. Mind you, an oat is an oat, isn't it?

                        Having said that, I have bought economy oats in plastic bags, and whilst they are fine for miking into a crumble topping or something, I find you can get a lot more dust in a cheaper brand than you do with Scotts - the box is full of good, thick solid oat flakes, which make yummy porridge in under five minutes. Perfect fuel for a winter's morning!

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                          13.08.2006 18:20
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                          Tasty breakfasty stuff.

                          Surprised to see me writing a review on porridge, aren't you? Well, frankly, so am I. Healthy breakfast foodstuffs generally aren't my forte, and until fairly recently breakfast consisted of 2 cups of espresso and 9 cigarettes. Maybe I'm getting old. Christ, I'm even drinking green tea. Anyway: porridge. Much beloved of Scottish people and the elderly. And, by all accounts, somewhat better for you than a big bowl of Crunchy Nut cornflakes liberally doused in chocolate milk.

                          Porridge comes from oats. I think. Probably. I don't think there's a porridge plant, but I'm prepared to be proven wrong on that. As far as I know they're good for you because they're relatively unprocessed and contain lots of fibre, making you feel fuller for longer than refined cereals do.

                          Moving swiftly on. I have porridge in the house only because my mother bought it for me in one of her random acts of kindness. I wanted her to give me £20 to buy sweets and vodka, she gave me porridge. I'm still not entirely sure how the hell that happened. She acquired it only because the funny spelling of 'porridge' confused her. Apparently she thought it was borage. (For those of you without an Irish mother, Borage: green herby plant. Porage: porridge. You can see how that particular mistake was made). Anyway, once she'd overcome her disappointment that the box of oaty things she'd purchased was not, in fact, going to be suitable for planting in the front garden, she offloaded it onto me with the hearty recommendation that 'porridge is really good for you. It makes your bones strong....wait; no, that might be milk, now that I'm thinking about it. Anyway, I don't like it, so you can have it. Love you.'

                          To acquire a box of Scott's porridge (I'm refusing to call it 'porage', because that's just not the right word at all) not dissimilar to this you can either a) befriend my mother (in which case good luck, and bring strong drink. You'll need it), or b) go to your local supermarket and peruse the cereal aisle until you find it. It costs £1.28 for 1kg, or £2.16 for 1.5kg. On opening the box it really doesn't smell too enticing, just a bit musty and vaguely floury. Looks wise, it ain't too pretty either, not unlike that dried pale brown mix you can get for guinea pigs. You know, I was going to explain exactly what porridge looks like for a moment there. Sod that. If you don't know yet it'll only spoil the surprise for when you do excitedly rip open your very first box of the stuff.

                          Having ventured into the world of healthy eating via green tea (tastes like leaves. It is entirely possible to choke on twigs whilst drinking it. If you're at all like me the tea bag version is a much safer option) I decided I'd give the porridge a go. To make it edible you combine about half a cup of oats and a cup and a half of milk or water (milk makes it marginally tastier) and either make it in a saucepan or in a bowl in the microwave. A word of warning; it tells you on the packet to leave it in the microwave for a set amount of time. Don't accidentally add on a couple of minutes to that time. Porridge, as I have found, will explode when microwaved for long enough. And Jesus, the stuff really burns when you spill it down you. Also, if cooking it on the hob, give it a wee stir every so often. Neglect in this scenario leads to a small fire.

                          After the prescribed amount of time you will be left with a big (it expands when it's cooking) bowlful of warm beige mush. Texturally it's like a bowl of cornflakes that have been left to go soggy in milk for ages - a bit sloppy and slimy. The taste is quite bland and nondescript but strangely comforting. If you're posh, you can add things to your porridge. Cream and honey is one option, but may negate the health benefits a bit. Chopped fruit is another, but is a bit of a pain in the arse, unless you can persuade someone else to do the chopping for you.

                          With or without the addition of fruit and various other bits and bobs Scott's Porage (porridge, damn them and their odd spelling) will keep you full until lunchtime. It's cheap, it's reasonably easy to prepare (admittedly, I injured myself in a porridge-related manner this morning, but don't let that put you off. I'm a bit of a spacker), it tastes nice in an inoffensive kind of way, and it's pretty good for you.

                          One last thing though, if you do decide to enter into the heady world of porridge eating, make sure you rinse your bowl as soon as you've finished eating it. Otherwise the leftover bits set like concrete and nothing short of a turbo charged pressure washer will shift them.



                          *This review has also been posted on Ciao by me.

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                            11.02.2006 15:16
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                            Breakfast cereal

                            You have all seen the box (top of page) of the Scotsman wearing a kilt and putting the shot. This is the packaging for the original Scott's Porage Oats. There is a second box however showing the same picture but with an orange/brown background containing Scott's Old Fashioned Oats which are a little larger. I like them both.



                            WHY SCOTT'S PORAGE OATS?

                            The blurb on the box informs us that Scott's Porage (this is not a spelling mistake) Oats have been milled in Scotland since 1880 and to ensure that we enjoy every bowlful they use only the highest quality oats and milling process.

                            Compared to rival companies and many cheaper brands, Scott's for me are the best. I haven't enjoyed the texture in other makes. Too much powder in some and harsher oats in others can give that sawdust affect and is probably why so many people turn up their noses at the thought of eating porridge. Others have had quite a bitter taste too. Scott's however have remained consistently good throughout the years. Even when made with water only, the taste is creamy and the oats are nice and soft and palatable.



                            EASY TO MAKE

                            The Traditional Way
                            Using a saucepan, mix half a mug of oats with water or milk. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring all the time.

                            Microwave
                            Measure in the same way, but place directly into a cereal bowl. Cook on full power for 3 to 4 minutes depending on the wattage of your microwave. Leave to stand for 2 minutes.

                            This is my preferred method. It is quicker, less messy and there isn't a pan to wash either. I also like mine with half water, half milk. Whilst the porridge is cooking, I take my shower. Unlike the traditional way, you don't have to stand over it.



                            ALTERNATIVES

                            Once it is cooked - what to have with it? In Scotland it is usually kept savoury and served or cooked with a pinch of salt. That has been my experience, but if any of our Scottish readers wish to correct me, please do so. I was brought up with the golden syrup version, that is a spoonful swirled on the top whilst others enjoy it with sugar. My favourite way now is to have it topped with either blueberries or raspberries or cooked with a sprinkling of dried fruit.



                            WHY PORRIDGE?

                            I find that porridge for breakfast fills me up and I don't pick or snack throughout the morning. Some facts about oats too: -

                            1. Oats contain more good fats than any other grains. These fats actually help you lose weight and are therefore great for diets.

                            2. They are a rich source of Vitamin B complex, which is good for the nervous system and for strengthening bones.

                            3. They are rich in nutrients and are a basic energy food which will kick-start the day and prevent tiredness late on.

                            4. They help to keep blood glucose levels in balance to maintain concentration and alertness.

                            Another metabolic boosting nutrient is Vitamin C. Porridge topped with fruit is a wonderfully healthy way to start the day.


                            NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

                            Per 100g
                            336 calories
                            11.0g protein
                            1.5 g fat (of which are saurates)
                            5.0g fibre
                            Sodium trace



                            PACKAGING AND STORAGE


                            On the back of the Scott's Porage box are recipes for you to collect. Recent ones have included fish pie, fruit crumble and flapjacks. So far all the one's I have tried have been successful. Whenever I make a savoury or fruit crumble, I replace some of the flour with oats to give the crumble a nuttier texture.

                            Kept in the box, Scott's Porage Oats will stay fresh for around two months. After that they need to be stored in an airtight container.



                            COSTS

                            Vary between £1.45 - £1.50 for a 1kg box. Sainsbury's have had an offer on for most of the winter selling 2 boxes for £2.50.



                            FINALLY


                            In order for Scott's Porage Oats to create it's own distinctive taste, oats are rolled thicker and are gently kilned as they say "to bring you the true taste of Scotland" On a cold, wintry morning I find Scott's Porage nourishing and wholesome and feel warmed right through. If you have tried other brands and decided that you don't like porridge, then I recommend that you try Scott's. At around £1.50 per box, it is probably one of the cheapest heathly breakfasts around.

                            And as Goldilocks once said when trying various bowls of porridge "This one's just right"

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