We live in Canberra, and in Canberra, it gets cold. I wouldn’t say that the cool weather has really ‘set in’ yet – we’ve only had a few nights below zero so far – but perhaps a couple of times a week we’ve felt cold enough to agree to fire up the wood stove and bask in it’s blissful radiant heat.
I’ve not discovered any need for fire-lighters – seems to me this is another example of a problem that didn’t need solving. Just a few sheets of scrunched up newspaper is more than enough to get the kindling alight. From there, I add just two or three medium sized pieces on full burn for 10-15 mins until the stove top is hot and we’re ready to cook.
Nothing warms my stomach better on a cold morning than porridge. As a child it featured nearly every morning during the colder months, and there’s no better way to start the day, in my opinion. Oats, water, a splash of milk and a pinch of salt – simple and delicious.
I used to get a bit bored stirring porridge on the conventional gas stove-top, but it’s a real pleasure to do so on the wood stove, as my body becomes thoroughly warm after standing so close to the firebox. The chooks love finishing the few spoonfuls of leftovers from the pot too.