Prune and almond breakfast cakes

If there’s one thing I love about Summer, it’s seasonal fruit. Forget days on the beach. Forget flowing sundresses. Biting into a ripe juicy mango or inhaling the scent of sweet pineapple while someone in the kitchen whips up a cheeky Pina Colada, is one of the most intoxicating pleasures belonging to the warmer months. And with all the stone fruit that’s around at the moment, it’s easy to hop onto the plum/nectarine wagon without batting an eyelid.

Prunes are so underrated though. Do you eat them? I love their honey sweet flavour, backed up by a tartness that gives you a subtle mouth-puckering zap. My best way to eat them is to cut them up (straight out of the fridge) over a big dollop of thick Bulgarian yoghurt with some toasted almonds for a quick breakfast. But since eating-on-the-run doesn’t always work out so well with a bowl of  yoghurt in hand… I  decided something more ‘portable’ was required. Which is how these prune and almond cakes were born.

prune and almond cakes

Ingredients
1/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup rice flour
1/4 cup oatbran
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs – beaten
1 Tbs coconut oil – liquid
1/2 large banana – mashed
1 Tbs agave syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups fresh prunes – chopped

Method:
Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a muffin tin with a knob of butter.
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Mix the eggs, vanilla, coconut oil, agave and banana.
Stir into the dry ingredients until well combined.
Fold in the prunes and spoon into the muffin tin.
Bake for 10 – 15 minutes or until cooked through.


A Thursday treat

When the mercury rises, there’s only one thing to do…

chocolate ice cream

 

65% chocolate ice-cream, courtesy of The Creamery


A Summer Dress(ing)…

Hello and welcome to 2012! So, what are we? …16 days in?
A new year, a new start, a new outlook…blah, blah, blah. Nothing we haven’t seen before. After all it happens every 365 days. Just like your birthday! The only change happens with us. Looking back at 2011, I find it hard to grasp how much I learnt about myself. About my world, THE world and where/how I fit into it. I met the most amazing and inspiring people along the way and feel so lucky to have been able to share some of their stories. The learning is not over though and 2012 is merely a treasure box just waiting to be unearthed, filled with wonderful new experiences and challenges.

For some, it’s the anticipation of a wedding, or the arrival of a first child (I can’t keep up with the number of friends I have who are pregnant! Eish). For others, it’s simply moving to another city or starting a new job. With all the chaos that comes along with it all, we sometimes lose track of “now” and just being in the moment. As one of my yoga instructors last year explained (and I totally understand what she means because it happens to me a lot), is that our brain likes to play tricks on us by thinking too far ahead into the future or forever holding onto the past. But the present is all that we have, this moment that you’ve been given right now. The future is not real. It’s in our imagination. Of course we can dream but be present, be now and live for today!

…Good. Now that that’s out the way, can we please talk about food?!

What is January without a little kicks-tart of healthy eating? Thankfully down here in the Southern hemisphere we find ourselves smack bang in the dreaded heat of summer which makes it the perfect time to fill up on light, refreshing foods that are packed with flavour but low in calories. There’s nothing like biting into a big chunk of juicy pink watermelon or inhaling the sweet tropical fragrance of a mango.

Salads are one of my favourite things to eat during summer…actually, make that all year round! I love playing with texture and colour and enjoy anything with a good “crunch” like chopped up Israeli cucumber, water chestnuts or some toasted nuts and croutons. But what is a salad without a dressing? Call me boring but I’m a total sucker for a simple Balsamic and olive oil vinaigrette, although sometimes I allow myself to be swayed by something a little more interesting.

I developed this dressing last year and literally made it almost every second day because I just couldn’t get enough of it! You could see it as a sort of mixture of hummus (which I love), pesto and vinaigrette all whipped up into one. Sounds a bit odd, I know…but keep reading. You’ll thank me later!

I know I said this was a dressing but you could actually adjust the consistency somewhat by reducing the amount of liquid and use it on sandwiches, grilled chicken or fish, as a dip for chips, or even as a topping on a warm baked potato! There are no limitations on this one so go wild and try it on/with whatever your heart desires! Aaaand, it contains all the healthy high-protein goodness that your body needs 🙂

What you’ll Need
1x can chickpeas, drained
100g raw almonds
½ cup olive oil
1/3 cup water
1 tsp garlic, creamed
¾ tsp cumin
11/2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp lemon juice
150g coriander (or whatever herb you like)

What to do
Place all ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and creamy.
Adjust consistency and seasoning to your liking.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Lasts 3- 5 days


A New Favourite

Hello friends!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend. Cape Town experienced its first real hot day on Saturday. In fact my twitter feed was crammed with nothing but pics of knobbly white knee’s, sand and patches of blurry blue background. OKAAYYY PEOPLE! We get it, you’re at the beach!! Sadly, I was stuck inside the whole day working but I did manage to take a break at about 6pm when the sun was starting to dip.

A walk along the promenade seemed to be the perfect way to get some blood flowing through the legs and being outside enabled me to enjoy the sound of families laughing, children playing and the general mellow, unhurried atmosphere that comes with a gorgeous day in Cape Town.

The main reason I left the house however, was to satisfy a very deep craving for (my favourite!) frozen Yoghurt. I was thinking of just popping into the Shell Select store and grabbing some Marcel’s but I always feel SO ripped off when I buy a small little 270ml tub for R17-ish !!!! I mean, really?!

I decided rather to head to Woolworths where the tubs are a bit cheaper- think R12. The chocolate flavour TOTALLY hit the spot and I can see that these “froyo” tubs are going to make themselves a comfy little spot inside my freezer this summer! Oh yes.

In one word: DELICIOUS!

A new favourite treat

xxx


Why Watch Rugby When You Can Drink Wine?

Phew!!!

How close was that game this morning???!!!

Don’t know what I’m talking about? (what rock have you been LIVING under?!)

This morning was South Africa’s first official game in the rugby world cup… and I know that pretty much the entire nation was perched, ready and waiting (with breakfast beers, boerie rolls and biltong) for the match to begin.  How typically South African! *smiles*

There are those few however, who tragically have  zero interest in rugga and wouldn’t know better if Pat Lambie were to offer them the window seat on a plane. This post, dear friends, is for you!!

Because while the boys sit glued to the box, you can start planning your summer wardrobe with a glass of this in hand!!!

I present to you … the inaugural, just-released and oh-so lip-smackingly delicious, Constantia Saddle Rose’- produced at Constantia Glen by the fabulous Karl Lambour. I’ve been working at CG since January and this is the first little punt I’ve done (on the blog), so bear with me 😉

The wine is ONLY sold at the farm so no quick trips to the bottle store, I’m afraid. BUT! There is a fantastic special on (R500 for 12 bottles!!) at the moment. Just do yourself a favour ladies and grab some! It’s refreshing, dry (but doesn’t scrape the back of your throat with acidity) and has amazing flavours of strawberries, raspberries, cherries, and a few hints of spice and toffee/caramel.

Trust me… it’ll get you through the next six weeks with a smile on your face!!  🙂

xxx