Posted 27th Jan 2014
This week is Farmhouse Breakfast Week, a celebration dedicated to the importance of breakfast which aims to get the nation to 'Shake Up Their Wake Up and enjoy a delicious and nutritional start to the day
The yearly celebration, taking place from 26th January to 1st February, is run on behalf of arable farmers who grow crops such as wheat, barley and oats. The campaign aims to raise awareness of the benefits of eating a healthy breakfast and promote the wealth of delicious produce widely available to us around the UK and Ireland. In the spirit of acknowledging where our breakfast foods come from we met with the team at Flahavan's - Ireland's leading producer of oat-based products - to find out more about the porridge-making process.
Flahavan's is a family company that has been milling Irish oats for over six generations at their family mill in Ireland. Based in the village of Kilmacthomas, between Waterford and Cork, Flahavan's are well known for their porridge oats which are completely natural and GM free. The area in which they are milled has its own microclimate, nestled beneath the shelter of the Comeragh Mountains, meaning the weather is neither too cold or too hot, improving the quality of the oat grain.
The oats are grown locally and put through a unique milling process that cooks the oat twice, producing a flavour that has been enjoyed for over 200 years.
The milling process
- First the oats are cleaned and then sent through a stream of air to remove any dust or light grains unsuitable for milling.
- The grain is then sorted by size and fed into an oat sheller which cracks the husk off the grain without damaging the kernel. The mixture of kernel and hull is then fed into a stream of air which blows off dust and hull before being polished, leaving groat.
- The groats are then cut into pinhead oatmeal by feeding them into a cylinder with lots of holes to create the oatmeal which can be used to make traditional porridge.
- The pinheads are steam-cooked at over 100ºC before being rolled into oat flakes, which are then dried, cooled and stored ready for packaging.
A range of Flahavan's Oats products, including Irish porridge oats, microwavable quick oats, porridge pots and organic oats are available throughout the UK in branches of Tesco, Asda, Waitrose and Sainsbury's. To find out more about Flahavan's visit www.flahavans.co.uk.
To get involved with Farmhouse Breakfast Week why not organise an event such as a breakfast club for kids, a breakfast fundraiser, tasting sessions or a meet the producer morning? For more ideas and some breakfast inspiration visit www.shakeupyourwakeup.com, and don't forget to look out for lots of delicious breakfast recipes all week on www.landlove.com!