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Breakfast cookies

15 Jan

Breakfast cookies

breakfast cookies by Deena Kakaya

2016 was an interesting year wasn’t it. Let’s not get into it, but I think the world outside and most definitely within, in the last year was fraught. But what did I take from it?

I learned that perhaps in a world where shouting ‘look at me’ though the wide-open windows of social media is now normal, it is of probably of benefit to close the door now and again and think about whether there is real meaning to what fills the day, heart and mind, over what drives the ego.

I learned that its perfectly the right thing to do, to be happy just for being alive and well and being happy and at peace to see good health and smiles within my loved ones; the year ended for us in the UAE and as I watched my little person race down the beach I marvelled first at how fast he is, but also how free he was, no shackles of the modern world weighing him down. He doesn’t judge himself.  He doesn’t fear the future. He just ran, freely and with joy.

I learned that I must listen to my body and I think in 2017, I’m going to shake it up a little bit and take some new risks. Little ones. And speaking of mixing it up with little things, I bring to you the breakfast cookie that creates tasty but naughty crumbs in my car. I won’t pretend that I don’t have time for breakfast, sure I could get up a bit earlier…I make breakfasts of kale dosa and fruit smoothies for the boy and fruity and nutty porridge for the husband… but I like sleep and think that eyeliner in the morning is good for me, so I sometimes eat breakfast in the car.

These cookies work so well for eating on the go, or filling up during mid-morning snack; they are eggless, contain no butter and made with spelt flour.  I find that they are plenty sweet enough for me, as they contain dried apricots, nuts, carrot, peanut butter and some brown sugar. There is brown sugar in them. I have chucked in lots of cinnamon so they smell great and that’s important.

breakfast cookies by Deena Kakaya

Ingredients to make 24 cookies

150ml coconut oil

150g of jumbo porridge oats

125g of spelt flour

A pinch of salt

100g of dried apricots, chopped

1 large carrot, grated

75g of brown sugar (I used light brown sugar)

4 tbsp. honey

50g chopped pistachio

50g flaked almonds

1 ½ desert spoons of peanut butter

1 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon

½ tsp. bicarbonate of soda

 

Method

1.       Preheat the oven to 180 degrees

2.       Combine the oats, spelt flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt in a box and mix them well.

3.       Add the remaining ingredients and ensure that they ae evenly distributed

4.       Onto a sheet of baking paper, place one tablespoon sized amounts onto the tray and form into rounds. You’ll probably get about 12 onto each sheet.

5.       Bake for about 12 minutes and once Breakfast Cookies have cooled, they will be lightly crisp on the top and chewy and nutty inside.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut and spice Quinoa porridge with apple and raspberries

29 Sep

I like having structure and purpose to my day. I like the feeling of being expended for a worthwhile purpose, one that is driving me towards productivity and something meaningful. I like talking to people and delivering. I want to contribute towards a bigger picture and I want to learn.

Coconut and spice Quinoa porridge with apple and raspberries

When I am hungry however, I am not the best version of me and so, whether I have worked the evening before or up and moving (frantically) around activities with my boy, a family day out or working from home; I need to eat.  I need to eat a proper breakfast. My recipe for coconut and spice quinoa porridge is generous, sustaining, nourishing, exotic in aroma and the spices of cardamom and star anise tickle the senses of escapism and luxury.  This is indulgence in the form of coconut milk and spice, but virtuous in the form of quinoa, which I have used instead of regular oats. There is even some fruit in here.

Coconut and spice Quinoa porridge with apple and raspberries

for the full recipe, visit the Great British Chefs link where my recipe sits.

 

 

 

 

 

Home-made Falooda ice cream (rose syrup, chia seed, and vermicelli)

7 Aug

Home-made Falooda ice cream (rose syrup, chia seed, and vermicelli)

They say you become like the people you surround yourself with.

Home-made Falooda Ice cream (rose syrup, chia seed, and vermicelli)  by Deena Kakaya

Home-made Falooda Ice cream (rose syrup, chia seed, and vermicelli) by Deena Kakaya

So, if you are around people who are athletic you will be more likely to use your gym membership or actually put on that swimming costume. If you spend time with folks who eat really healthy foods, you will consequently take inspiration and be eating gloriously green, blueberry chia and super food fuelled meals and if you find yourself with positive and happy people who tend to see the brighter side of life, you will inevitably think of challenges as stepping stones. If you immerse yourself in environments of intellectual dialogue, perhaps on politics or economics between ambitious and focused people, you will cultivate and progress your own mind and if your friends like money, cars and big houses…you may just find a way to achieve those same things.

If your mates are academic you will probably finish that post graduate qualification you’ve been thinking about for ages and if your pals wear cutting-edge make-up even to the supermarket or on a run, you will think twice before postponing that hair dressers appointment to cover up those grey hairs. If the banter around the dinner table on your Friday night get-together is about getting that next promotion or making partner, your energies too will flow that way. If you friends have found peace, love, God, family, children, simplicity…you may just find some time to do the same.

Intuitive isn’t it. I mean naturally. It’s one of the reasons parents worry about the company their children keep because we know that we can drive all our efforts to instil good values but the association that our children forge with groups of their choice will often have a very powerful influence on their own attitude and outlook. Why then have I not become more like my mother?

We stood at the Pani Puri stall in Wembley the other day and whilst I stood a little bit removed on the side, my mum plunged into the crowd and cheekily ordered a plate of dahi puri chaat and we could also that the anticipation was positively tickling her. I remarked to my dad that my mother hasn’t lost her inner child and he told me that it’s the way to hold onto the beauty of life.

Iridescent eyes and quivering excitement greeted us and of course a hand wafting around a plate bursting with cool, crisp, sour, sweet, tangy little filled puri. There is no pleasure like eating them with loved ones, outdoors, before they fall apart but nobody knows how to live a moment like my mother. Nobody would guess anything else about her.

As I had a little moan about the kitchen, the mess, the heavy earrings and stifling outfit, my hunger and of course the worries of nursery and work and oh! Life. My mother just chuckled and went upstairs in the cool of the late afternoon. She didn’t return for ages but I heard a loud snore as I went up the stairs thirty minutes later. When I told my dad, he said, ‘look, this is how peaceful people live life’.

Here’s to my mother. She wanted a falooda after her paratha, curry, Pani Puri and dahi puri on the street but couldn’t fit it in. Falooda are thick milkshakes perfumed with rose syrup, pumped with swelling chia seeds, and silky vermicelli and there is usually some sort of fruit and soaking in there too and perhaps even jelly but there is always ice cream floating on the top and it conveniently holds the umbrella. You get the picture. It is a treat for all but has that youthful, fun element to it-just like my mum. If she were a drink, I reckon she would be a falooda.

I would not be me if I did stretch the recipe a little…Rose milkshake was the remedy and bribe for many a parental challenge during my childhood. Don’t want to drink milk? OK have some rose milkshake. Don’t want to sit and watch that Bollywood movie? OK have some rose milkshake? Too much arguing with the cousins…yep. Rose Milkshake. It looks pretty and that aroma…mmm…You’ll find rose syrup in the ethnic aisle of large supermarkets like Tesco or in an Asian Store.

I have made an ice cream of it all. Ta-DA! The bright pink vermicelli? I soaked that in beetroot juice. I even have chocolate vermicelli in this version but the thing is, it’s an ice cream.

Ingredients

300ml whole milk

300ml double cream

7 tbsp. rose syrup

1 ½ tbsp. chia seeds

3 tbsp. finely broken vermicelli

25g cooked beetroot

One pink apple, cut into small cubes

4 tbsp. sugar

4 egg yolks

1 tsp. corn flour

Method

  1. If you are using an ice cream maker, ensure that your equipment is ready.
  2. Mix the milk, cream, Rose syrup and chia seeds together and chill them in the fridge for 3 hours.
  3. In the meantime puree the beetroot and soak the vermicelli in 50ml water.
  4. Once the milk has been chilled for the three hours, to allow the chia seeds to swell, make the custard. Combine the three egg yolks, sugar and corn flour in a large bowl and whip them until the sugar is no longer grainy and becomes a pale yellow colour and creamy in texture.
  5. Heat the milk and cream until it almost boils but do not let it boil.
  6. Add the milk and cream into the large bowl a little at a time, to avoid the eggs getting too hot and scrambling. Combine well and then turn it back into the saucepan that you heated the milk and cream in.
  7. Heat the custard on a very low flame and stir continuously. Do this until the back of the spatula can be covered and when you draw a line through the layer on the spatula, the line holds.
  8. Turn off the heat and mix in the vermicelli and apple and then allow the custard to cool to room temperature before leaving it in the fridge overnight. Now add the chocolate vermicelli if you are using it.
  9. Churn the custard in an ice cream maker or leave it in the freezer until it has set.
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