Q I have a bowl of porridge for breakfast every weekday, but I’ve started to get bored of it. How can I make it different?
A From a mix of your favourite fruits to dried fruits and nuts, the possibilities are limitless. Here are a few.
1. Make a quick compote with your favourite berries. Just simmer 500g frozen berries with 4 tbsp caster sugar for 10 minutes, stirring often. Cool and drizzle some over the porridge. Refrigerate the rest in an airtight bottle.
2. Add a pinch of cinnamon powder, some chopped almonds and a few sultanas. You can also add a trickle of honey for some extra flavour.
3. If you have more time, then caramelise apple wedges in butter and maple syrup until tender and spoon it over the porridge.
Q I’d like to bake a chocolate cake but do not own an oven. Can I make one in a pressure cooker?
A Yes you can. Pressure cookers have been used extensively for baking by people without ovens. What’s more, the process of preparing it is a piece of cake too!
First, make the batter like you would for a regular cake. Also, you need to have a pressure cooker that is at least three litres, but preferably five litres.
Remove the gasket and whistle and place a small plate or the base tray in the pressure cooker. Close with the lid and preheat on medium for 2 minutes.
Meanwhile, pour the cake batter in a greased utensil that can fit in the pressure cooker. Tap the utensil firmly on the kitchen table to ensure there are no air bubbles.
Now, remove the lid of the cooker and, using a pot holder, carefully lower the cake utensil inside. Close the lid and reduce the heat to low.
Let it cook for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. When done, remove the cake pan and let it rest for 10 minutes before inverting it over a wire rack. Let it cool completely before slicing it.