Are you ready for a breakfast cereal recipe that will blow your socks off yet is still 100% healthy? Something that will have you jumping out of bed and bounding down the stairs? This Totally Tropical Healthy Morning Muesli is just the ticket, and even better just takes minutes to make. No melting, no soaking, no baking, just a little chopping and mixing.
I’m usually reluctant to move away from my granola, yoghurt and berries in the mornings (it’s just so irresistibly crunchy), but this muesli with milk and ripe, juicy chopped peach is absolutely delicious. The mango, coconut and brazil nuts give it a tropical feel and the vanilla and cinnamon add another level of deliciousness. It’s also a bit lighter than granola as there is no oil or honey used.
2 Cup Oats
1 Cup Chopped Dried Mango
1 Cup Chopped Walnuts
1 Cup Chopped Brazil Nuts
1/2 Cup Seeds (I used pumpkin, sunflower, flaxseed & chia)
1/2 Cup Dried Coconut
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Vanilla Powder
Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and store in an air tight container… Yes it really is that easy! You can add in more oats, nuts or fruit as you like. Serve with milk or yoghurt and some fresh fruit- I’m loving donut peaches at the moment!
I am obsessed with breakfast, it’s quite literally what gets me out of bed in the morning. While I have long been devoted to my original granola recipe (which is incredibly delicious, if I do say so myself), recently I have been cheating on it with an altogether different but equally delicious granola.
I’ve been experimenting with buckwheat a lot over the last few months, and was happy to discover that when roasted it makes a delicious alternative to oats for granola. There are also tonnes of health benefits associated with eating buckwheat, but I won’t bore you with them today. This particular granola recipe is bound together using a delicious gingery banana sauce that gives the whole recipe the most incredible flavour. Best of all, it takes less time to cook than my usual granola recipe. If this doesn’t have you bounding out of bed and down the stairs in the morning, I’m not sure what will!
1 kg Buckwheat Groats
200g Seeds (I used pumpkin and sunflower)
100g Coconut flakes
2 tbsp Coconut Oil
1 Tbsp Honey
1 Inch Fresh Ginger, grated
In a large bowl mix together your buckwheat, pecans and seeds.
In a saucepan melt the coconut oil and add the grated ginger and honey, let it simmer away for about two minutes. In another bowl break up the bananas and mash until liquid, if you have a hand blender than use that- it will be much quicker. Add the ginger/oil/coconut mix to the bananas and stir through.
Mix the wet banana mix to the bowl of buckwheat, nuts and seeds and mix together until all the dry ingredients are well coated.
Grease a deep baking tray with some more coconut oil and spread the granola mix on top. Pop into an oven preheated to 180C for about 30 minutes, or until golden. Make sure to stir the mix every few minutes to ensure the granola is evenly baked.
When baked, stir in the coconut flakes. Let the granola cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
I have been enjoying this in the mornings with berries and almond milk, but it’s delicious with any type of milk or yoghurt. Enjoy!
Chia Pudding is probably not for everyone, well on first glance at least. Despite it’s slightly tadpole appearance, it’s really tasty when mixed with interesting flavours and is a blank canvas to experiment with whichever way you like.
I decided to go with two of my favourite flavour combos, coconut and chocolate. The important thing with chia pudding is to jazz it up with fresh berries, nuts etc. This is one of the healthiest things you can eat in the morning as this super seed is jam packed with omega 3s, protein and is a high source of fibre. Having this pudding for breakfast is the ultimate morning health kick!
Ingredients (serves 3-4)
80g chia seeds
1/2 can light coconut milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp cocoa powder
Stir together your seeds, cinnamon, vanilla and your coconut milk. At first they’ll float around but within a few minutes they’ll start to swell, stir again 10 minutes later so they don’t clump together. It’s best to do this step the night before so it’s ready for the morning. Just make sure to stir a few times and as it thickens you’ll need probably need to add more water.
With a hand blender blitz up the banana and the cocoa powder until it’s a smooth chocolatey sauce.
Layer up a jar one third of the way with chocolate and then fill the rest of the jar almost to the top with the chia pudding just leave a little space for the berries. You could also top with crushed nuts, yoghurt or bee pollen like I did.
Porridge gets a bad rep. Despite being one of our most traditional and much loved Irish breakfasts, many people perceive it as boring. I guess most breakfasts that don’t come with a side of pulled pork are considered boring these days. Porridge is one of my favourite things to eat (I couldn’t imagine a world without oats in it, seriously) and if I’m having an incredibly lazy day, I’ll sometimes even make a bowl for dinner.
Porridge is great because not only is it really nutritious, cheap and quick to make, it also is open to endless flavour varieties. You can add in pretty much any fruit, nut, seed, spice, milk or sweetener. While I usually have mine with some berries I decided to go a bit decadent today with a version that tastes like your favourite banana bread with lots of gooey banana and caramel flavours. Read on to see where you have been going wrong all these years…
Ingredients (serves 1)
1/2 cup oats
1 cup water
1/2 tsp Cinnamon (or a full tsp if you are a cinnamon monster like me)
Mix your oats, water and cinnamon in a pot- you can add a pinch of salt but I never find it makes a difference. If you can soak your oats overnight, all the better. It just makes the porridge more creamy. This is definitely advisable if you use jumbo oats.
Put the pot under a medium- high heat and stir vigourously. Non stop until it cooks. Many people walk away from the pot and let their oats boil in water which ends up in truly manky porridge- please don’t do that.
While the oats are cooking slice your banana into a frying pan on a medium heat with a tsp butter and a tsp brown sugar. Cook for a few minutes, flipping over halfway through until the bananas are golden.
When your oats are almost done (it should take between 5-8 minutes) and in a splash of milk and stir again until combined. Pour your porridge into your bowl.
Sprinkle your porridge with brown sugar (this is the traditional Irish way) and let the sugar melt into a nice caramel on top. Do this before you add anything else so it can melt, if you add the milk first it won’t melt. Then place your bananas on top, then add another splash of milk (or cream if you have it), a sprinkle of almonds and maybe even a drizzle of honey if you’re feeling decadent and in need of a sugar hit.
Enjoy in the knowledge that you have cooked and are eating porridge like a boss.
Every now and then you just need a little weekend indulgence. Porridge or poached eggs on toast sometimes just doesn’t cut the mustard and you need a little “yippee I made it to through the week” food.
In the spirit of all things OTT and way too decadent for breakfast, I decided to make this Chocolate and Coconut Stuffed French Toast. This is really simple to make and if you have someone over for brunch, they’ll think you’re a real whizz in the kitchen! You don’t even have to make the chocolate sauce, you can use Nutella… Simple!
Ingredients (Serves 1):
2 slices good quality white bread (I used cranberry white spelt)
Chocolate (I used dark but you could just use nutella instead of making the sauce if you have some handy)
Break 2 squares of chocolate and place in a heavy bottomed pan with 2 tbsp of coconut milk. Let it melt over a really low heat, taking it off the heat every now and then so it doesn’t curdle. Mix together until totally melted into a sauce.
Whisk together your egg, 2 tbsp coconut milk and some cinnamon in a bowl. When mixed through place on a big plate.
Slather both slices of bread with coconut yoghurt, then drizzle the chocolate sauce over the coconut yoghurt. Squish the two slices of bread together and place it on the eggy plate.
Let the stuffed sandwich sit on the plate for a minute absorbing all the egg and then turn on to the other side to do the same.
Place a little coconut oil onto a hot frying pan and when melted place the eggy bread on top. Cook for about two minutes on each side, make sure the pan isn’t too hot.
When cooked slice in half and serve while marvelling how beautifully the coconut and chocolate oozes out the sides.
To make up for my temporary insanity in posting a vegan recipe last week, I’m making up for it this week in the most un-vegan recipe I could muster. A triple whammy of animal products- cheese, egg and bacon!
Don’t get me wrong I have no problem eating vegan food every now and then, and those vegan chickpea burgers were yum. But try and separate me from my beloved cheese, eggs and bacon for more than a few days? We’ll have issues.
I was home last weekend in West Cork and stocked up on some of my favourite Cork produce: Gubbeen smoked streaky bacon, and Toonsbridge buffalo Mozzarella. I combined these with some local organic eggs and was pleasantly surprised at how much cheese I could stomach first thing in the morning! You could always leave out the egg and it would be equally nice but please don’t skimp on the garlic butter. This is so delicious and indulgent, it would make the perfect weekend brunch for friends.
1 handful fresh mozzarella (about 1 large ball- I used Toonsbridge)
4 tbsp soft butter
2 crushed garlic cloves
First off you may as well make your garlic butter, just mix together your butter and crushed garlic, add as little or much as you like. My breakfast guest was a wuss so just had plain butter.
Grill you bacon pieces on a medium high heat for a few minutes on each size- you want them well cooked but not crispy. If they’re very oily after cooking dab them a little with some kitchen paper- don’t dry them out though.
Fry your eggs in a little oil while the bacon is cooking, do them to your taste runny or set.
Toast your bread and smear with some garlic butter. Tear up the mozzarella and lay out on the bread and pop under the grill for a few minutes until melted and gooey. Then top with your bacon and egg and serve!
As you may have guessed from the title, this is not my recipe. Alas, it’s Ottolenghi’s. I was tempted to play around with some of the ingredients and pass it off as my own, but that would be pretty dishonest. Plain theft really. Bloody Ottolenghi… he’s just so damn talented! I visited his restaurant in Islington last year with my friend and it was incredible. We barely spoke to one another we were enjoying the food so much! It seems there’s nothing he touches that isn’t turned into incredible, luscious food porn. He’s going to be speaking at the Ballymaloe LitFest this year but unfortunately the tickets to his event are sold out, so I’m going to have to try and gatecrash it. To those who have managed to get their hands on tickets… I’m very jealous.
While this isn’t my recipe, I felt that I just had to share it to those who may not have already tried this… The rest of the world needs his shakshuka in their lives. This recipe is the perfect brunch, it feels indulgent but it’s pretty healthy. You can also make the sauce the night before which is pretty handy if you want to speed up the cooking the next morning. I didn’t have any thyme or saffron and it still worked beautifully. I served this up with my homemade sourdough bread for three very harsh critics (my family) and they all loved it, but don’t just take my word for it…. Try it out!
½ tsp cumin seeds
190ml light olive oil or vegetable oil (I used just under half a cup)
2 large onions, peeled and sliced
2 red and 2 yellow peppers, cored and cut into 2cm strips
4 tsp muscovado sugar
6 sprigs thyme, picked and chopped
2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 bunch fresh coriander, chopped
6 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
½ tsp saffron strands
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper
Up to 250ml water
8 free-range eggs
In a large saucepan, dry-roast the cumin on high heat for two minutes. Add the oil and sauté the onions for two minutes. Add the peppers, sugar, bayleaves, thyme, parsley and two tablespoons of coriander, and cook on high heat to get a nice colour. Add the tomatoes, saffron, cayenne, salt and pepper. Cook on low heat for 15 minutes, adding enough water to keep it the consistency of a pasta sauce. Taste and adjust the seasoning. It should be potent and flavoursome. You can prepare this mix in advance.
Place four saucepans on medium heat and divide the mixture between them. Break two eggs into each pan, pouring into gaps in the mixture. Sprinkle with salt, cover and cook very gently for 10-12 minutes, until the egg just sets. Sprinkle with coriander and serve with chunky white bread.