Kedgeree With Pinhead Oats


This is an absolute revelation.  I’ll probably never make kedgeree with rice again (but I love rice, so I probably will). Pinhead oats (also steel cut oats) may well be my new favourite thing.  I bought a bag from Mmm… in Grainger Market, they are absolutely amazing, if I need something that probably won’t be carried in the average supermarket they always save the day, utter foodie heaven.

I had intended to send this recipe for consideration to the Guardian for their weekly supplement Cook as they were calling for readers to submit recipes using oats, but I didn’t read that part of the article until 12 hours after the deadline.  Oops.  Next one is for noodles, I have a trick or two up my sleeve there!

Nevertheless, It’s the best food twist I’ve had all year and I demand you make it.  It goes a little something like this..


Take two fillets of undyed smoked haddock and poach them in a mix of milk and water with peppercorns, half an onion and a bay leaf.  Everything goes in cold and when it begins to boil just turn off the heat and let it sit while you do other things.  Yes it will be cooked, no it will not be overcooked.


Skin side up and this pan is just off the heat.  I do indeed love heavy pans, I don’t go to the gym so I may as well lift delicious things.


In a separate pan you need one finely chopped onion, two heaped teaspoons of good quality curry powder, one bay leaf and about 50g of butter – calm it, this will serve four people.


Sorry.  I love the colour of curry powder.


Fire it up on medium and cook out the onions without colouring them.  The whole thing is a little on the sweet side so we don’t need to caramelise the onions.


Add in 220ml (ML) of pinhead oatmeal and make sure it all gets coated with the melted spicy butter – much like you would with risotto rice.  Add in 340ml of hot Kallo chicken stock (or fish/vegetable stock if you’re meat free) and turn it to low.  Stir it often to prevent it sticking.


Once pretty much all of the water has been absorbed you can peel the skin away from the haddock and flake it into the oats in big chunks, mixing the fish in will break it up further.


Soft boil or poach an egg (or two) whilst you mix in some finely chopped parsley and a little lemon juice, these two give the earthy flavours a little lift.  Of course, use coriander instead by all means, I prefer parsley here.


Ta da!  This made me a happy girl.  Go get some happy!

Could serve four alongside a starter or dessert, or two ravenous people who like their eggs two at a time.

2 smoked haddock fillets – approximately 500g (could easily be less, 500g is a very generous amount of fish)
200ml milk + 200ml water
2 bay leaves
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 small onion in chunks
1tsp peppercorns
220ml (yes ml, I.. um.. broke my scales..) pinhead oatmeal, not rolled/quick cook oats = mushy!
2 heaped tsp mild curry powder, I used Barts
50g butter
340ml chicken stock (other stocks are good, but not beef)
Bunch of parsley
1 lemon
soft boiled eggs to finish

Poach the fish in the milk + water mix with one of the bay leaves, the peppercorns and the small chunked onion.
Put it all in a pan and bring it to a boil, when this happens switch off the heat and leave it alone, sitting in the milk.
In another pan add the finely chopped onion, curry powder, last bay leaf and butter. Bring to a medium heat to soften the onions without colouring, give it maybe 5-7 minutes.
Add the pinhead oats and coat with the melted butter.
Add in 340ml of hot stock and stir everything together. Keep the heat on medium-low and stir frequently to prevent sticking.
Wait for the oats to absorb most of the stock, this took me about 10 minutes on low, may be longer or shorter for you – keep a watch out.
Finely chop the parsley, quarter a lemon.
Peel the skin away from the fish and add it to the spiced oats in large chunks now that the stock has been absorbed and the oats have separated slightly (don’t worry, it will never separate like fluffy rice, but this is ok).
Turn off the heat, add a squish of lemon juice and the parsley, mix everything around, trying to go gently on the fish.
That’s it, top off with soft boiled eggs and dig in!

Kedgeree and Poached Eggs for Breakfast

Good kedgeree is a good thing. I’ve had a craving for this for days so what better time to have it than when it’s needed to absorb the excesses of New Year’s Eve?

I like kedgeree big and bold and savoury and I prefer the smoked fish undyed.
I’ve also used smoked peppered mackerel and home hot smoked trout. Both have been delicious. If you’re making this with hot smoked fish like the mackerel (which is cold), add it to the rice in chunks about half way through cooking so it warms through thoroughly.

Need help with poaching eggs? Watch this from Serious Eats.. The Food Lab: How To Poach Eggs

Serves two hungover hungry people very generously.

1 large onion, chopped
two thirds of a good chicken stock cube* – if you like
6 green cardamom pods
6 cloves
2 bay leaves
1 mug of basmati rice – there are no scales or measuring jugs in a hungover kitchen
2 fillets of raw smoked fish – more if they’re small. I had haddock in the fridge
1 mug of milk
1 small onion skinned and halved
a few peppercorns
1 tbsp medium curry powder – fresh, not kept for months at the back of the cupboard
A handful of chopped flat leaf parsley
A little lemon juice
2 fresh eggs

Right. In a saucepan big enough to hold everything melt a scant tablespoon of butter on a low heat and add the large chopped onion; the cardamom pods; one bay leaf; the cloves; the chicken stock cube and the rice. Coat everything with the melted butter (mash in the stock cube) and turn up the heat. Add one and a half mugs of boiling water to the rice and slap on the lid. As soon as it comes to the boil turn the heat to low and leave it alone for 13-15 minutes. You’ll be able to hear when the water has been absorbed because there will be a slight hollow crackle sound. Try not to lift the lid until the time is up.
The bits which are not rice will have floated to the top so you can pluck them off.
Add the curry powder and mix thoroughly, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen any potential catching grains.

While you’re waiting for the rice to cook..

Put your egg poaching water on so it’s ready when you are.
In another pan – frying pan – whatever. Add the mug of milk; peppercorns; small onion halves and the remaining bay leaf. Lay the fish in this and turn up the heat. You’re going to poach the fish in the milk until it is just cooked, turning it over half way through.
Add a little of the fish milk to the rice – maybe 6-8 tablespoons – and lift out the fish. Peel off the skin if it has any and lay the whole fillets on top of the curried rice. Put the lid back on and keep the heat at it’s lowest. Don’t forget about the rice, you’re only keeping it warm.
Put the eggs in to poach.
In the short time they take to cook throw the parsley into the kedgeree with a little drizzle of lemon juice and gently mix everything together, keep the fish flakes quite chunky.

Serve up the kedgeree with one oozy yolked poached egg on top of each.

Eat greedily with a cup of tea and ignore the dishes.

*I only use Kallo brand stock cubes. They do not contain any MSG and contain real meat juice, not just meat fat. Yuck. Just be aware of their salt content, don’t salt until you can taste the cooked rice.