Easy-Peasy Breakfast Muffins

This is one of my fondest muffins. It’s my grandmother’s recipe that she’d use all the time when we were younger, always interchanging ingredients. It is so versatile, delicious and filling and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

 

Recipe – makes 12

  • 1/2 cup course wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ripe banana (mashed)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup mixed seeds
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit
  • 1/4 cup muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp bicarb
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • almond milk/water – add a small amount of liquid at a time until a thick consistency is achieved

 

Mix all those ingredients up

Throw into oiled muffin trays

Bake at 180ยบ for 15 min

Cool in tin and transfer to wire rack

Or Eat straight away… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Just Enjoy!!

*They keep for about a week in an airtight container

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Chia Pudding

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I wanted to get all the facts about the Chia seed because I’ve always confused them with a seed my grandmother used to make a delicious rose syrup milkshake/dessert (Falooda). The seeds she used resembled chia seeds but she called them ‘sabja seeds’ and after some investigation, I’ve found that they’re more commonly known as Basil/Sweet Basil Seeds which are native to India and the Mediterranean.

 

Difference between basil seeds and chia seeds

There seems to be quite a difference in Nutritional values and health benefits so I think I’ll dedicate my next post to the Basil Seed of my childhood.

For now:

Chia Seeds – Unearthed

The botanical name of the Chia plant is Salvia hispanica, and it is native to central and southern Mexico and Guatemala. The seeds of this plant were popular in Aztec and Mayan culture, and were consumed mainly as an energy food.ย These days, dietitians suggest to incorporate them in diets as they are considered a super food.

The seeds are rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorous. They contain an abundance of protein and good fat and they are also loaded with antioxidants and fiber. They help maintain normal blood sugar and blood pressure levels and make for excellent energy boosters.

You can simply add them to salads or sprinkle them on breads orย soak them to make puddings.

*when soaked, they expand rapidly and form a mucilaginous mass

These super seeds are pretty expensive but a small amount really goes a long way.

 

 

Here’s how I threw mine together:

 

  • 1/4 cup Chia Seeds
  • Almond milk/ Cashew milk/ Normal milk (I had some almond milk that I had already made) – enough to cover the seeds and possibly more to loosen them up
  • Whatever fruit you have. I’ve used a banana, pear, passion fruit and blackberries that we foraged last month and froze.
  • Alpro (plant-based yogurt alternative) – it’s the yummy coconut flavour, of course.

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Soak a 1/4 cup of Chia Seeds in Almond Milk overnight in the fridge. Then in the morning, chop up whatever fruit you have and either throw them all into the soaked Chia seeds or package them up and add them when you’re about to eat.

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Stuff your Peppers

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I really can’t help my self, just One more (I promise):

Ok so what happens when you eat too many bell peppers? [WAIT FOR IT] You get aย Bell(y)-ache!!

AHAHAHAHA (I’m still hysterical about this)

Yes, I am that weird ๐Ÿ˜›

(and I feel like these antioxidant-packed veggies don’t get enough attention.)

SO…

Are you sick of not knowing how to get those 5 a day into your meals without it being repetitive and boring.

Well I definitely am.

That’s why I decided it was time to spice things up, or is that sweeten things up?

*FUN FACT – Bell Peppers are sweet due to theirย limited amount of the compound capsaicin (which gives chili peppers heat).

Sometimes, when you’re sitting there, racking your brain for ways to change up meal time it’s good to have a list of sides that include all your powerhouse veggies. Kinda like a food roulette – spin the wheel and whatever it lands on is what you’re having/making. Only downside – if you’re like me and don’t like being told what to eat (even by something you’ve created to AID you in your meal planning – not crazy at all) then list them out and choose randomly.

So I started thinking, I should share my Powerhouse sides ย and hope that it helps you plan your meals better.

Powerhouse side #1

Stuff your Peppers

-cos it’s fun and it tastes good and…(Read on for more Fun Facts)

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Slice the tops off different coloured Bell Peppers and deseed.
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Stick a toothpick/skewer in em to keep the lids on. Just remember to remove them after they’re cooked… :/

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*FUN FACT – This versatile vegetable possess an overwhelming abundance of powerful nutrients, with over 30 carotenoids (Distinguished by their orange, yellow, and red pigments, carotenoids are found in many plants, algae, and bacteria. Carotenoids act as antioxidants within the body, protecting against cellular damage, the effects of aging, and even some chronic diseases)ย http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/what-are-carotenoids/6

My Stuffing:

  • Cooked brown rice
  • Chestnut mushrooms – quartered, diced courgettes, peas, sweetcorn, crushed garlic, finely chopped onion – all sautรฉed in a little olive oil
  • Add to brown rice and heat through. I added parsley, freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste.
  • Pack the stuffing into your peppers. I used some cheddar and spinach to finish mine off before putting on the ‘lid’ and securing with a toothpick.
  • Into the oven for 10-15min depending. We have a gas cooker so I guess just keep an eye on it.

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For more *FUN FACTS go have a read ofย http://www.lifeextension.com/Magazine/2012/7/Bell-Peppers/Page-01

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We had ours with baked cod smothered in cashew pesto crust and steamed baby potatoes. What will you have?

Ok ok… This is it, I’m Done….

Trying to think of a pepper pun, but nothing rings a bell ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Mousse vs Healthy Alternative

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I had to make a really quick dessert a couple of days ago and stumbled upon this easy to make chocolatey goodness.
If you’re a chocolate after food kinda person then you will love this. it is creamy and smooth but maybe a bit too much, i did fill those teacups up.
I’m a fan of using whatever i have in the house and find myself substituting ingredients if i have to go to the shop (yes i am lazy) but this recipe was so easy that the only thing i had to buy was the fresh cream. I even just used salted peanuts on top, just dusted them a little. but salt really does bring out the FLAVOuR in chocolate so it works
Find the recipe here:
http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/chocolate-peanut-butter-pudding
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OR

FOr a healthier and easier alternative I have this simple and still very yummy recipe:
Chocolate mousse with a twist

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ingredients:
  • 1 large avocado
  • 1 banana
  • 3 tbs coconut oil
  • 4 tsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbs honey/agave
  • ยผ tsp or less (you don’t want it to over power) sea salt
  • a few raspberries/strawberries to garnish
Blend. REFRIGERATE. Serve.

โˆ— serve with a sprig of mint, chopped up fruit or nuts.

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If you like trying new recipes, why not give these two a try and let me know which you think tastes better.

โ™ฅEnjoyโ™ฅ

Almond Milk

My first attempt at making my own Almond Milk was a bit of a learning curve. Hence the delay in this post. I hope this in depth account of how to make it, slightly makes up for my absence. ๐Ÿ™‚2015-07-28 09.33.48

Tips:

  1. Do Not leave your almonds to soak for over two days. If you see the water turning a gooey opaque it’s probably because they’re going sour. I found that refrigerating the soaking almonds works wonders.
  2. The milk will only last (at a push) for two days in the fridge. So try to make just what you need. No one likes throwing stuff out, especially after you’ve put so much effort into it.
  3. The milk will separate when left to stand, do Not freak out, just give it a little mix. ๐Ÿ™‚
  4. Try to get muslin or cheesecloth – or if you’re like me and like to just find something around the house use a handkerchief (possibly a new one :O) or an unused tea towel will work.
  5. For 1 cup of soaked almonds I used a cup of cold water which gives a creamy yet fluid consistency.
  6. Make sure to wash your soaked almonds thoroughly.

Cost:

  • Almonds – ย +/-โ‚ฌ1.86
  • Being able to control the use of ingredients and sweeteners – Priceless

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Place 1 cup of your soaked almonds into your blender with a cup of cold water.

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Blend until the nuts have broken down considerably. (I blended on high for about 2 minutes with a 600W blender)

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Next, I placed my clean hankie (you can use cheesecloth or muslin) into a deep bowl. It makes pouring the mixture easier.

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Once you’ve place your mixture into the material, grab the four corners and pinch as close to the almond meal as possible and then you just need to squeeze as much liquid out as possible.

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8 And this is the what’s left.

Now you can flatten this out in an oven tray and dry in a low oven (keep an eye on it, it may burn and no I don’t know that from experience..Obviously :P) Alternatively, place in a dry pan on low heat and keep mixing it around and it should dry in 15/20 minutes (a bit more time consuming but I preferred the result ). Once it’s dried out and slightly toasted you can use a coffee grinder like I did and pulverize it into a flour. Just be aware that the coffee grinder will be super hard to clean out then. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

You can use this almond flour in a load of things. I’ve started adding it to my cupcakes.

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This was the result of One cup of soaked almonds

And TAH-DAH!!!

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Two cups of nuts

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And that’s my cup of coffee with a dash of freshly made Almond Milk. Yay me

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