This porridge is just right. It calls for equal parts of two styles of oats, which means the steel-cut bits keep their pop, while the rolled oats melt around them — and getting them to the perfect texture only takes 20 minutes. Cooking with half milk, half water is enough to make it feel rich and loving, without slogging you down first thing in the morning. This will seem like a lot of salt. But it won’t be too much, because at the end you’ll add something sweet and something milky and it will all live in harmony.
Serves 2 to 3
1 1/2 cups whole milk, plus a few generous splashes
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons Maldon, or other flaky sea salt (if using
finer salt, start with 1/2 teaspoon and add to taste)
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup steel-cut oats
About 2 tablespoons sugar (maple, brown, or white)
or maple syrup
 Combine the milk, water, and salt in a medium pot (a 2-quart pot should do it) and set over high heat. As soon as the liquid comes to a gentle simmer, add both kinds of oats and lower the heat to medium.
 Cook the oats at a steady simmer, stirring frequently and lowering the heat as necessary to maintain the simmer. After about 20 minutes at the simmer, the rolled oats will have turned a bit mushy, while the steel-cut oats will be just tender and pop when you bite them.
 Taste for seasoning — it should be on the salty side. Add sugar or syrup. Spoon the porridge into warm bowls and let it sit for a minute. Then carefully pour a little cold milk around the edges of each bowl, so it pools all the way round.
 Sprinkle a five-fingered pinch of sugar or drizzle the syrup in the center of each and let it melt, then serve right away.