3 of a Kind: Sophisticated Spins on Homey, Hearty Porridge

©Copyright 2015. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2015. All rights reserved.

3 of a Kind checks out three places across the country to try something cool, new and delicious.

Porridge may not be top of mind when you think of buzzworthy menu items, but remember when kale was nothing more than a decorative cabbage used for fall festivals? A survey of the country’s most-groundbreaking restaurants reveals chefs are all about Goldilocks’ favorite meal. They’re fashioning seriously elegant savory porridges from heirloom grains topped with everything from truffles to eggs to, yes, kale.

Little Park, New York City

At Little Park, Andrew Carmellini’s gorgeous New American restaurant, an heirloom grain porridge is served at breakfast and brunch, topped with two poached eggs, roasted hen of the woods mushrooms, and pine nuts.

Chef de Cuisine Min Kong sources the grains from New England and explained that the dish evolved as an alternative to oatmeal. “We didn’t want to just go with a regular oatmeal, because it’s expected,” she said. “We thought it was a good opportunity to use a different type of grain.”

Hillside Supper Club, San Francisco

“Porridge is another great example of peasant food refined,” said Tony Ferrari, co-owner and co-chef of Hillside Supper Club, a restaurant that pays homage to a rustic style of cooking in the Bernal Heights neighborhood of San Francisco. “I enjoy how hearty this dish is — it has all the ingredients to get you through your day. One bowl and you’re good to go.” At Hillside Supper Club, Ferrari serves his warm porridge with kale, wild mushroom, a soft farm egg and crispy chicken skins.

Faro, Brooklyn

At Faro, the Bushwick restaurant known for its seasonal cooking and artful pasta, Chef Kevin Adey loves his porridge, which he cooks from milled local grains: wheat berries, corn, oats and emmer. “Cereal grains are so overlooked as only a processed food product. So I wanted to shine a light on them in their purest form,” he said.

The dish changes with the seasons. In spring it’s topped with sweet peas and morels and garnished with pea tendrils. In summer it comes with a tempura squash blossom stuffed with peekytoe crab, topped with zucchini ribbons. And in the fall, the porridge is cooked down with vegetable stock, butter, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, then layered with mushrooms and scallions.

Keep Reading

Next Up

3 of a Kind: Togarashi

Feeling the heat? Check out a chile-laced spice blend that is elevating everything from cheesecake to cocktails.

3 of a Kind: Scraps

Sending something to the scrapheap used to mean dooming it to its demise, but restaurants across the country are now making the most of scraps, turning carrot tops, bread butts, corn silks and more into incredible dishes that are worth saving and sav

3 of a Kind: Shakshouka

Shakshouka is a savory egg entree made with tomatoes, peppers and onions that's popular in Israel. Here are a few creative ways it's being adapted by chefs in America.

3 of a Kind: Baijiu

Find out which celebratory liquor is joining vodka, gin and the rest of the crew as a popular spirit.

3 Savory Spins on Greek Yogurt

Take your yogurt to the next level of savory goodness.

3 of a Kind: Cottage Cheese

Call it the ultimate cottage industry: Cottage cheese is making its way onto the menus of top restaurants around the country.

3 of a Kind: Miner’s Lettuce

A wild green with a fascinating past is showing up as an elegant garnish at restaurants around the country.

3 of a Kind: Steeped Cocktails

These three restaurants and bars prove that coffee tools don’t have to be one-beverage wonders.

3 of a Kind: Fermented Salads

Chefs are using pickled vegetables and fermented dressings to create tangy twists on typical salads.

3 of a Kind: Udon Shops

Udon — the chewier and plumper cousin to the ramen noodle — is slurping its way into the spotlight at these three shops.