DID YOU know oats are super healthy because they contain the whole grain?

Nothing has been stripped away and they are more than just a convenient breakfast food to kickstart the day.

As we move into another season the colder autumn weather affects more than just your wife’s wardrobe and the heating bill. Your body also experiences changes in energy levels, metabolism and food changes.

Some might skip the gym if it’s bitter cold, convincing themselves they deserve a calorie splurge to warm up. But the truth in the matter is that no weather warrants unhealthy eating habits.

Oats are cheap to buy and great for baking, providing nutrients that are essential this time of year.

They are high in vitamins, fibre and zinc, and they lower cholesterol, being incredibly versatile and sold in a recyclable cardboard box.

People have been growing oats for at least 7,000 years. They are environmentally friendly, needing less water than most crops, helping to reduce soil erosion.

They need very little fertilizer to grow, but sadly, oats are the unsung heroes of the breakfast bowl.

Bonny Scotland is the home of oats, which seem to grow well in its climate. Porridge has not always had a good press.

True, ‘porridge oats’ appear in the Ian Dury song – ‘reasons to be cheerful’. Each boy in Oliver Twist had one porringer, viewed as a watery symbol of deprivation and punishment that Ronnie Barker understood in the sitcom Porridge.

But I’m going to change all that and create a memory from granny’s Be-Ro book and honour nostalgia, as we all love to dunk a biscuit. An oat biscuit is suggested to be among the best: the dunk-ability should last a mug-full.

This easy and quick recipe needs no rolling pins, which increases your good cholesterol making the biscuits doubly-healthy. There is no need to buy expensive branded bags of cookies or biscuits, because these always come out of the oven looking good and smelling amazing.

This recipe is also very versatile to tweak by adding a handful of raisins, chocolate chips, walnuts or cranberries.

Oats are a slow-release carbohydrate, meaning they keep you fuller between meals because they stabilise blood sugar levels. This should see you through the morning and keep you full until dinnertime.

What I don’t understand is why my biscuit barrel is always empty!

Recipe for oaty biscuits

Makes around 18


150g/5oz self-raising flour, sift

150g/5oz porridge oats

1 teaspoons ground cinnamon or ginger

150g/5oz butter

120g/4oz caster sugar

2 tablespoons golden syrup

2 tablespoons milk


1. Parchment line two large baking trays.

2. In a large mixing bowl, sift over the flour and ground ginger.

3. Stir in the sugar and porridge oats.

4. Put the butter, golden syrup and milk into a saucepan and heat over a low heat setting, stirring with a wooden spoon until the butter has melted and combined.

5. Pour into the mixing bowl and stir until combined – don’t be alarmed if the mixture is sticky.

6. Allow the mixture to stand for 10 minutes so the oats absorb the moisture, making it easy to work with.

7. Using a tablespoon, spoon out a biscuit and place onto the parchment paper.

8. Arrange on the baking trays, not too close to each other as they will spread, then press down the tops a little bit

9. Bake at 180cGas Mark 4 for around 12 -15 minutes until firm and golden-brown colour.

10. Allow to cool on the baking trays for a few minutes before transferring with a fish slice onto a cooling wire.

11. Put the kettle on and sit back with a nice cup of tea and enjoy your rewards.