Friday, 24 December 2010

Silent Night

"Silent night, Holy Night! All is calm, all is bright." A wonderful time of year, full of joy, laughter, families, abundant love, and a time where calm is present perpetually. Though amidst this calm the very purest sense of pressure is also swirling with an almighty grip on some, if that is so, go gently now. As the sun begins her journey to another year a new Dawn will come, nothing stays the same.
Meanwhile Christmas beckons, and I’d like to send my hugest heartfelt hugs and love to anyone who may be struggling with the heightened pressures and emotions that come but once a year, in the kitchen and anywhere in life. Christmas brings both beauty and poignancy in equal measure, annual celebrations mark the changing face of time and everything is magnified. Each aspect of our lives shapes into the kaleidoscope that is our reality, brighter and more brilliant than at any other time, and things not going to plan become illuminated like the first ray of light after a storm. 
The burning hues of sadness, tinge our hearts, and become unbearably painful for some. What makes it a special time of year? It's a time when we hope to be surrounded by those we love most dearly and this may not always be possible. Christmas transports us to vivid childhood memories and the bold colours of innocence may open wounds with spear like intensity.

This year my beloved Dad passed away and two friends. The bittersweet poignancy of Christmas carries a different note that is hard to comprehend, few things comfort, though love and music, family and friends, in no uncertain terms do. Also the treasured memories that are irreplaceable will forever live on and warm my heart.

It is difficult for us, who are left behind; though it is with pure faith and love that I trust we will all meet again one day in a peaceful and better place. For anyone who has experienced loss, they will understand the longing for the sound and comfort of the voices no-longer present, the laughter that now whistles in the wind, that catches us off guard in moments of beauty. I always share a special tip in my posts; this one is as simple as it is pure.

Special tip – Be thankful for those we love, now and forever, they will always be in our hearts.

This recipe is especially for anyone who may be missing someone right now. I’ll call it, The Recipe of Life. Please share it with anyone who needs some TLC at Christmas time.

With All my love,

Wishing you a peaceful Christmas,

Love,

Sinead xxx

The Recipe of life

Ingredients

Trust, an epic handful
Love, 1 gallon, though this has a never ending flow
Sympathy, use sparingly – we all need to feel
Patience, one level tbsp
Serenity, an endless pour
Truth, only the essence will do
Forgiveness, for ourselves and all
Light to balance the dark
Acceptance, as much as you can afford
Hope, enough to fill the deepest bowl
Faith, in total abundance

MIX an inspired amount of total trust with love.
POUR a few drops of sympathy taking care not to overpower the blend; flavours and feelings need space to breath.
HEAT gently over a low flame, this time of year can be very chilly.
SPRINKLE over some patience and plenty of serenity.
ADD truth and forgiveness with unending light.
FOLD in acceptance and hope, take care here, these don’t always come easily.
STIR everything slowly together and with a steady hand, breathe deeply.
TRUST that the right flavours will develop with enough understanding and thought.
SHARE abundantly and remember friendship is the present we give and receive everyday.
LIGHT a candle on top and thank God for all the loved ones in our lives and cherish the memories of those who are no longer with us, may they rest in peace.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Angels and Strangers

Falling slowly from the sky,
A white feather passed me by.
Moments later I breathed a sigh,
My heart at peace, no need for why?

Winged petal
Do you know that feeling when you share eye contact with a stranger and somewhere deep inside there is a recognition and understanding that soars higher than words, as if you already knew this person? I love these moments and welcome them. 

Chance meetings are like the familiar chorus in a favourite song, they are very much familiar in a totally unfamiliar way, each new verse pushes us forward and then the tide of life washes us back, renewed each time! Like favourite smells, they spark excitement and vivid associations deepen. Christmas time is full of some such moments, its as though our senses are heightened and perhaps our hearts more open at this time of year.

I have a few favourite Christmas songs , this one brings me to happiness every time. Often we share a love/ hate relationship with classics. The infamous Brussel Sprout for instance. Gorgeously green and bursting with nutrients, it's a true case of love or loathe.  These green pearls are related to the cabbage family and contain vitamin A , C, potassium, calcium with a very high amount of protein. So with that in mind I’ve created the ultimate Vegetarian Christmas Supper. Supremely delicious and absolutely scrumptious, it will leave the Carnivorous kind hankering for some, because even though this dish is most definitely vegetarian it has the look and taste of a totally hearty and fulfilling meal. You'll feel luscously light and comfortable after this Angel Sprout Supper, the joy of quiet and stillness aid digestion, so why not indulge yourself with a great book.
I love Sprouts!

I love to read a good book on Christmas day, "Angels in my Hair" by Lorna Byrne makes for heartfelt Christmas reading. I found this book by chance;-))? Quiet, I mean shhhhhh, softly quiet . . . . . allows our mind time to process the ever changing events in our lives. And whether it’s found in your kitchen while gently chopping, stirring, or snuggled up in your favourite armchair reading, may your peace and QUIET be ever blissful and bring calming clarity so that lost connections may flourish and happy memories be rekindled. However you find serenity, remember an Angel is always close by;-) If in doubt read, "Angels in my Hair" !!
Special Tip – Go green in your kitchen. Buy some plants for your kitchen windowsill, they will refresh and cleanse the air, soak up carbon dioxide and pollutatants all the while. Creating calm in the heart of your home.

I have been nominated for a little blog award and would love your support, please click on this link and support Feeling Food. Thank you✩♡✩
Love, FFXX
Angels Sprout Supper

Ingredients

Red onion 1, peeled and roughly chopped
Purple sprouting broccoli 400g, stalks trimmed and cut into two inch pieces
Chestnut mushrooms 250g, cut in half
Brussels sprouts 300g
Garlic cloves 3, crushed
Wholegrain mustard 1 tbsp
Soured cream 300 ml
Eggs 4 whisked
Parmesan 50 grated
Filo pastry 1 packet
Olive oil 70ml

PRE-HEAT oven to 180’ gas 4.
HEAT one tbsp of oil in a large frying pan.
ADD red onion, broccoli, chestnut mushrooms, Brussels sprouts and garlic cloves.
COOK for ten minutes stirring frequently.
MIX wholegrain mustard, soured cream, eggs and Parmesan in a separate bowl, seasoning well.
POUR into pan and mix vegetables and liquid well.
BRUSH oil over (8in x 10in) 20cm x 28cm baking tray.
LAYER one sheet of filo on top and brush with oil all over.
REPEAT layering process with 5/6 more sheets, depending on how many are in the pack, you’ll want half the pack for the topping.
SPREAD vegetable mix evenly over the filo.
LAYER remaining filo on top repeating the brushing with oil process.
TRIM any excess filo around the edges.
LIGHTLY cut the pie diagonal across both ways, resembling the Union Jack flag.
BAKE for 45 minutes until lovely and golden.
SERVE with some cranberry sauce for a truly Christmassy delight.
LOVE sprouts, your body does;-))

Friday, 10 December 2010

Golden Wrap

Golden glitter wraps darkest night,
Christmas splendour makes hearts feel light.
Cherish the days, savour the sights,
Thank goodness for friends and family delights.
Sing, be merry, and always bright!

My bedroom floor was awash with golden glitter last night, a pretty sight, though totally accidental. As I wrapped some presents, I used the glitteriest wrap I’ve ever seen, glittery yes, and stubbornly unwrappable too. Happy I chose it of course, though because it seemed to repel sellotape, I used red ribbons instead, which worked a treat. I guess some things, like people, are different and often forcing the same formalities just isn’t going to work, and why should it?
A lovely alternative?! ;-D
I love cooking and I know many people who do also. That you’re reading this suggests maybe you do too, I hope so. Even so, if not, it doesn’t really matter, what counts is being open to new experiences. This Christmas I’m doing things differently, and while some traditions are cherished, I welcome new ones and cherish change. For in change I find “Festivities” that I never conceived before. New ideas are a wonderful gift and the generosity of feelings this time of year is sometimes overwhelming.

Pies, perfect for sharing
I love simplicity and have come up with the simplest of seasonal Festive Feeling Fish Pies. If you’re not a fish fan, use chicken breasts instead, it is a wonderful warming meal, and will be loved by all. Celeriac is a total delight and happy alternative to the usual potato topping of most fish pies. This recipe is for a the delightfully different readers, whatever that means, and of course everyone, however different we may seem there are some things we all share!

Celeriac feels light on the palette and holds a softly smooth fresh taste that compliments both fish and chicken beautifully. Naturally high in vitamin C & K, phosphorous and potassium, you’ll be humming a merry tune after eating, you’re body will be thanking you for this formidably festive fuel.

Mash, mash, mash
Special tip – Let go of the “Perfect Pie” complex. Yes, it could have done with more seasoning; yes it may be overly crispy. None of this truly matters, what counts, is that you’ve enjoyed the process and with each repetition of any recipe your confidence will grow a thousand fold.

Wishing you a Happy weekend, and may it be packed with the brightness found in nature and carrots!
Gorgeous colour

Love,

FFX

Festive Feeling Fish Pies
So warming and delicious
Serves 6

Celeriac 2 peeled and roughly cubed
Celery sticks 4, grated
Carrot, 1 large grated
Courgette 1 grated
Strong cheddar cheese 100g grated
Fish, a mix of salmon, cod and haddock fillets, skinned and cut into chunks
Flat leaf parsley 1 small bunch
Butter 25g
Dijon mustard 1 tsp
White pepper 1 tsp
Parmesan 50g


PRE-HEAT oven to gas 4, 180’.
COOK  celeriac in a saucepan with enough water to cover, bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes.
MIX celery, carrot, courgette, cheddar cheese, fish and flat leaf parsley in a large bowl.
SEASON well.
MASH celeriac when cooked.
MIX into the mash, butter, white pepper, Dijon mustard and parmesan.
MASH mash, mash!
SPOON fish mixture into heatproof clay pots, or one appropriate sized heatproof dish
I prefer to use individual pots, they look prettier and feel more special.
SPOON over celeriac mash and smooth with the back of spoon.
SPRINKLE over some cheddar cheese on top for a gorgeous golden topping
PLACE pots on a baking tray and bake for 25 minutes.
SERVE with another of your favourite vegetables for a fantastic Festive feeling.
ENJOY!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Calm in December

Where would you like to go this December, to Destination Christmas calm perhaps? I’m checking in often this coming month. For in the hurry, hurry, rush, rush haste, to get things right, moments are missed and time, like that snag in your tights runs away, though the never ending ladder of lists sometimes seem relentless, a place called calm is closer than you may think!
A drop in the Ocean! Anish Kapoor brings beauty to London

I would cross an ocean to find you,
I would sail a thousand seas to be with you.
I would dive into your most perilous place to know you.
Oh lovely Octopus, your eight legs dance the merriest tune on my taste buds!


I have some lovely news to share, in October’s OMG Ottelenghi post there was a competition – the prize, Yotam’s latest cookbook “Plenty” and a recipe dedicated to the winning entry. My Ode to Octopus is a clue; guess what features in this recipe? When I read the winning entry below my mouth watered, in a way that only seafood can conjure.




“So my favourite food is without doubt the wonderful and bizarre looking fruit of the sea, the OCTOPUS!!
Simply lightly boiled, drizzled with olive oil, seasoned with salt n pep’s and a gentle sprinkling of paprika, gives an absolute taste sensation!!! Every mouthful, a heavenly chewy, juicy, pleasurable experience. What more could you ask for?”

What more indeed? Thank you to the Lovely Angie Monaghan, this recipe is for you and all the other Octopus lovers’ out there, if you’ve yet to try this sweet mild flavoured wonder now’s a good time. The generous ocean waves rock our taste buds as a treasure chest of seafood swims towards our nets, our appetites can’t help but celebrate, and today’s treasure is of course Octopus. Seafood is so good for us, bursting with zinc and essential fatty acids; it brings beauty and light feelings to our bodies. This Octopus dish makes an impressive starter or light lunch for a memorable occasion.

Special tip - Feasts aren’t about quantity, instead share a selection of delicacies and special foods that you may not often eat, to make for an unforgettable feast. Think oysters, think octopus, think caviar, think smoked salmon, ooh the oceans booty is purest beauty!

I hope your December is dreamy and calm in abundance and on the subject of Christmas presents, here’s one of the best any of us can give, words from another beauty;

“Oh, I love hugging. I wish I were an octopus, so I could hug 8 people at a time!” ~ Drew Barrymore

Hugs,

FFX

Oceans 8

Scrumptious!
Serves 6 as a starter, 4 for a light lunch

Ask your fishmonger to de-eye! Unless you have ambitions to be on I'm a Celebrity!
Octopus 2, cleaned and de-eyed! Roughly 1.2 kg
Celery 2 stalks roughly chopped
Carrot 1 roughly chopped
Shallots 4, halved, no need to skin
Sea salt
Potatoes 7 medium
Lemon 1 juiced
Extra-virgin olive oil, a generous drizzle
Flat leaf parsley 1 small bunch

PLACE octopus, celery, carrots, shallots and a generous sprinkle of salt into a pot.
POUR over 2 litres of water and bring to the boil.
SIMMER for 1 hour.
BOIL potatoes for 20 minutes in a separate pan.
DRAIN and allow to cool, before peeling and slicing into chunks.
SPOON the octopus into the sink and rinse well, peeling of the outer skin, which comes away very easily.
CHOP octopus into cubes.
MIX potatoes, octopus, lemon juice, olive oil and flat leaf parsley together.
SERVE warm on warmed plates.
SWIMMINGLY sensational!

Friday, 3 December 2010

To Risotto and beyond

Pearls of Aborio transform,
Stirred.
Like shifting sands,
Soaked with stock.
Twirled by hands and
Simmered simply.
Mmmm,
Spooned gently, energy giving
And cooked with love. . . . .

Ah risotto. The Italians,  patriots of romance, fine food and beauty, bring a dish - chameleon like in essence. Risotto’s many guises are too many to count,  from porcini mushrooms to truffle unctuousness, to simply Parmesan then pretty peppers, and the choice and combinations are endless, much like their sumptuous ice creams! Yum!

Christmas is soon upon us. A chance meeting got me thinking, hold that thought, is anything chance? The words shared can be summarised in three, “WAIT,” – “BE PATIENT.”
Now we're not talking life-changing decisions here. We’re talking when to put up the Christmas tree. When is the right time? Well, it’s going to be different for us all, if you have children then Christmas comes early, if not?

 I have a request, compare Christmas preparations to a special Sunday roast, where you’re favourite people will be present, the best presents! Imagine you’re roasting a joint in the oven, if you start to early you’re left with dry meat, to late and stress slinks her slippery grip tightly around your temples. We definitely don’t want that. I guess trust that the right time will become clear.

One question I’m often asked, what to do with Turkey leftovers? Traditionally sandwiches are the obvious solution – though cold and often dry, despite copious amounts of mayo, sandwiches are hard to make with love! Risotto however, woohoo, there’s a delight!

Creamiliciously good, paired with sweet, sweet corn, and a bejeweled bowl of beauty awaits, all golden and white, totally festive and unbelievably simple to make. No stock cube required either!


Special tip – Smile while you stir your risotto! I promise it will taste better while also setting off an emotional chain reaction of positivity. This blog isn’t called Feeling Food for nothing!! ;-))

Sending you warm weekend hugs.

FFX

TURKEY FESTIVE GOLDEN RISOTTO

SERVES 6

Cooked Turkey meet, 300g shredded
Corncobs 4
Onion 1 finely chopped
Olive oil 2 tbsp
Spring onions 1 bunch finely chopped
Arborio rice 400g
White wine vinegar 2 tbsp
Flat leaf parsley 1 bunch roughly chopped
Celery salt 1 tsp (this is a magical ingredient)
Butter, 25g
Black pepper, a generous scratch
Parmesan, freshly grated 3 tbsp

Try slicing husks in a pot to avoid flying kernels!
CAREFULLY slice husks away from the cob.
POUR 2 litres of water into a large pot, along with cobs and onions, leave the kernels to one side.
BRING to boiling point then simmer for 20 minutes.
NOW add husks and season generously, simmer for a further five minutes.
STRAIN broth, reserving the stock. I place another pot in the sink with a colander over the top, keep the kernels and strained onions to use later .
TAKE care it’s very hot.
HEAT a large pan for a minute and pour in olive oil.
STIR in onion and fry briefly, before adding vinegar.
POUR in the rice and give a good stir.
LADLE one spoon of the stock into the rice and stir until absorbed.
REPEAT this process, smiling all the while!
MANY happy thoughts later, 20 minutes to be exact, add the cooked turkey, corn kernels, parsley, butter, celery salt, pepper and Parmesan.
MOMENTS later having given a few more special stirs to heat everything through, serve lovingly and enjoy the special times to come.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Beautiful Beetroot Pie

Happiness depends on ourselves - Aristotle
Healthy Appetites depend on Happy hearts - Sinead 
♡◦°˚°◦.¸¸.◦°˚ˆ*As the cold weather sweeps in like a rip tide and night time creeps upon us quicker than we know, the gentle hum and warmth of a kitchen offers a sweet welcoming call and comfort for cold tootsies. Bright colours and deep flavours, soothing suppers and crunchy textures all await an enthusiastic beautiful cook! 

This volcanic vegetable pie will bring brightness and a piquant glow to your evenings. There is something very special about Beetroot, beyond its piercing staining hue, its delicate sweetness springs from the filo pastry, complimented beautifully by the thyme and goats cheese. I invite you to play around with cheese combinations, experiment with your favourite cheese, following the quantities mentioned, to create your very own poignantly purple pie.

Beetroots are now in season, so instead of the usual pickling and using them in salad recipes, try this wonderfully warming Beet Pie, that bursts with delicate flavour, savoury sweetness and texture. It would  be a very pleasing vegetarian option for a Christmas feast, though one may find that even the most ardent meat eater is spellbound by this delicately crisp delight. I also serve it as a starter, though cut it into small portions when doing so.

Special Tip – Buy a brush. Food preparation is not dissimilar to any creative craft; with the right tools you’ll find most things effortless. The buttery brush strokes this recipe involves require a little brush, there are many kinds on the market, my favourite are these, enjoying finding your favourite.

In Ancient Greece, millennia ago, beetroots were presented on a silver platter to Apollo at Delphi, or so the legend goes. Today they should be presented likewise, perhaps on golden trays, to pregnant ladies and anyone who’s struggling with winter blues. Beetroots are a wonderful source of folic acid, they also help prevent nausea and contain the bioactive agent betain, which boosts healthy liver function. What makes beetroot so bloomin’ beautiful? Betacyanin of course, it’s the pigment that gives beetroot its amazing antioxidant properties, so why wait any longer? Father Christmas, or whoever your Santa Clause may be, has lots to do, so give yourself a gift and buy a bunch of beetroot and the other ingredients mentioned, you'll be surprised at the exquisite  taste, I promise.

Lots of love,

FFX

Beautiful Beetroot Pie
* Open filo pastry pack when ready to use it! This will prevent it from drying out and make it easier to handle.
*You may use cooked Beetroot to reduce prep time, this is a good idea the first time you cook the pie as it will make the whole dish seem much simpler.
Feel magenta!

SERVES 6 

Uncooked Beetroot, 500g grated (squeeze out excess liquid in a clean cloth)
Red onion 1 grated
Nutmeg, grated ½ tsp
Thyme Sprigs, 4 leaves only
Eggs, 4 medium
Goats cheese, 200g crumbled
Cottage cheese, 200g
Filo pastry, 1 packet
Butter, 40g melted
Horseradish sauce, 1 tbsp
Creme fraiche, 1 tbsp

PRE-HEAT oven to 180’ gas 4.
WHISK eggs in a large bowl.
STIR grated beetroot, red onion, nutmeg and thyme into the eggs and mix well until fully combined.
ADD feta and cottage cheese and mash until thoroughly combined.
SALT loves beetroot, so season generously!
MELT butter in a small saucepan.
BRUSH melted butter over (8in x 10in) 20cm x 28cm baking tray.
UNWRAP filo pastry and keep under a damp cloth, this will stop the pastry drying out. 
LAYER one sheet of filo on top of the baking tray and brush with butter.
REPEAT process with half of the filo sheets, roughly 5/6 sheets, depending on how many are in the pack, so that you have an even base for you beautiful pie.
SPOON beetroot mixture over the filo and spread evenly with the back of a spoon.
LAYER remaining filo sheets in the same fashion as before.
SCORE lines, using a sharp knife, over the pastry to resemble a chess board, take care not to cut below the filling. (This will make it much easier to cut once cooked) 
SPRINKLE a few droplets of water over the pastry to give a lovely crispy finish.
BAKE for 45 minutes, until golden and crisp.
LEAVE to cool slightly before serving, or serve cold, depending on the time of year:)
SERVE with some Horseradish cream. 
STIR crème fraiche to the same amount of Horseradish. 
SPOON alongside your beautiful pie. This is a truly delicious dish worth savouring.
SPLENDID!

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Beautiful on the outside?

What’s the tinsel all about? Golden lights are twinkling, brightening our darkening days as winter peels through falling leaves and icy panes. Jack Frost scatters his silvery might and all the while we welcome the festive season. In London Christmas is in full swing and decorations adorn the window shops. Christmas time equals big bucks and as shops tempt us with heart-warming interpretations of festive frivolities, let's remember true joy is much closer to home, mmm in our kitchens perhaps?

Christmas is all about love and peace, family and friends, comfort and kindness, music that pulls on our heartstrings and wonderful smells that tinkle our taste buds and stir us deeply. Colours, bright, dazzle and delight, filling our hearts with warmth and light, oh Christmas is an awesome sight;-) And so much of our experiences are about flavour and spice, this time of year.

When I close my eyes and reflect on Christmas; I feel warm inside, I'm not certain what makes the difference between a happy Christmas and an empty one, though am sure the amount of love in our lives makes a massive difference. I love the colour and the thought that goes into decorations, though for me they’re peripheral and not Christmas at all really. I’m going to offer a slightly alternative platter over the next few weeks, though totally Festive and happily healthy I'm hoping these recipes will not only be delicious and merry, but restorative too. Touch your way through Yuletide, Feeling Food, enjoy warming textures and fragrances that majestically dance and brighten our bodies from the inside out, that is where truest beauty permeates.

Cooks go a bit cuckoo for Cranberries at Christmas time and I’m no exception. These ruby opulent berries bring brightness to sponges that are joyously light and full of melt in the mouth scrumptiousness.


 Offering a delightful alternative to the dense and sickly sweet traditional puddings.

Special Tip – Feasts are a fantastic opportunity to enjoy rich foods, create balance by blending traditional choices with a few lighter ones, it’s the turkey that needs stuffing, not you. 

Most of all have a merry berry Christmas time and 
Happy Thanks Giving 

to all who are celebrating it today, especially my Aunt Kate, Uncle Pierce and lovely cousins Siobhan, Bridie and Bill;-) 

It’s not the easiest time of year for some people, childhood innocence is tenderly mourned, as are those loved ones no-longer present. For anyone who feels like this, this recipe is my gift to you, and if you know someone who may feel like this too, it's time to dust off your apron and make Christmas a truly happy one for those especially in need, bring joy to ALL hearts and may those you share it with know how lucky they are. I’ll say adieu for now, and leave you with a lovely old Indian saying, 

“Certain things catch your eye, but pursue only those that capture your heart."


Mini Merry Berry Christmas Cakes

Serves 6

Butter 125g melted
Sweet Freedom/ if unavailable Maple Syrup 125g
Eggs 2
Rice flour 125g
Cinnamon ½ tsp
Baking powder 1 tsp
Milk 70ml
Cranberries 200g
Cranberry & Apple juice 200ml
Vanilla pod 1 slit and seeds scooped
Sweet freedom 60g, or fruit sugar if unavailable; Taste for your desired sweetness, cranberries vary in tartness, so you may add more towards the end of simmering.

PRE-HEAT oven to gas 4 180’.
MELT butter in a saucepan and transfer to a bowl.
WHISK in sweet freedom and eggs, until nice and frothy.
SIFT flour, cinnamon and baking powder into a large bowl.
POUR in milk and sweetened eggs until you have a smooth lump free batter.
BUTTER 6 heatproof ramekins or pots and scatter four cranberries into each one.
DIVIDE mix equally between the pots and wrap each one in foil.
PLACE in a large baking tray or casserole dish.
BOIL a kettle and pour in water so it reaches roughly an inch in the dish.
BAKE in the oven for 40 minutes and remove, leave for 10 to cool down.
PLACE remaining cranberries in a saucepan, with vanilla, sweet freedom and juice.
SIMMER for 15 minutes.
UNWRAP the mini merry cakes and pour over the lovely luscious berry sauce.
SUBLIME served with a generous dollop of Greek yogurt!

Friday, 19 November 2010

Bad boy bananas!

Banana, banana! Bananas! This trio of delights beats Banoffie pie any day of the week. Bananas are the Don Corleon’s of the fruit family. 
They travel easily, you're only one peel away from total freshness, they're soothing on the taste buds and mellow yellow in hue. Ooh, I love bananas.

Everyone seems to like them, what's not to like? While an orange oozes it's scent, spritzing it's zing, bananas are brilliantly subtle, softly they peak, teasing one toward a flavour fandango, tripping sweetness along the palette and leaving a feeling of contentedness. Its no wonder the King Kong favours them too, they boost serotonin and second to coffee, bananas are our biggest source of antioxidants;-)





Special tip 

 with desserts 3 is the magic number. Think texture combinations and contrasts. I often scatter nuts, seeds or toasted oats for texture and goodness, or make syrup to wash things down. Experiment - surprise yourself. Have fun in the kitchen with friends.


The 3 elements here include - Mascarpone, mixed with lemongrass to lift this bejeweled dessert to Himalaya heights. Banana kookies, sumptuously sweetened by the lovely addition of coconut oil, which is available from most health food shops (if you can't find it, butter is fine) and finally the gorgeous chamomile syrup for even more Banana bliss! If you're making this in advance, keep the Lemongrass mascarpone in the fridge and transfer to the freezer around 30 minutes before serving. A friend who tried this said it reminded her of Singapore, wherever it brings you, may it rock you into a melodious calm and brighten up your day.  

FFX

Bad Boy Bananas

Serves 4

For the Lemongrass Mascarpone

Mascarpone 250g
Lemon grass, crushed 1 tsp
Limes 2 juice
Sweet freedom 1 tbsp

For the chamomile bananas

Dried bananas 100g
Chamomile tea 400 ml
Sweet freedom 1 tbsp

A great healthy alternative to butter
For the Banana Kookies
Rice flour 60g
Porridge oats 60g
Baking powder 1tsp
Banana 30g, mashed
Sweet freedom 30g  
Coconut oil or Butter 60g
COMBINE lemongrass, limejuice, sweet freedom and mascarpone together and pop in the freezer.
PRE-HEAT oven to 350F 180'/ gas 4.
MIX rice flour, oats, baking powder and banana in a bowl.
MELT coconut oil or butter and sweet freedom in a small saucepan.
POUR into bowl and mix everything well with a wooden spoon.
SPOON dollops of the mixture onto a non-stick baking tray.
SHAPE into size of your choice.
BAKE for 10-12 minutes.
BOIL kettle and make some strong chamomile tea, pour in a small saucepan.
ADD dried banana and sweet freedom, simmer for 10 minutes.
REMOVE banana cookies from oven and leave to cool on tray for five minutes.
SERVE scoops of chilled lemongrass mascarpone with a few biscuits and the deluxe chamomile bananas drizzled over.
FRUIT  feels good
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