Showing posts with label coffee. Show all posts
Showing posts with label coffee. Show all posts

Monday, May 4, 2015

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Sometimes I feel like presenting my cooking or recipes to people is like a Maths test. Not in the sense where x butter + y flour + z eggs and sugar = cake kinda way and people question my x, y and z’s. But in the sense that a question I get asked most frequently is – how did you come up with that? I’ve said that people refer to my cooking as quirky, rather than conventional and I feel like my little recipe pre-amble is my chance to “show my working”. So I try to present where my thinking starts, winds and ends up at the finished dish. I think a little background shows that it’s not quirky for quirky’s sake, there’s a lot of thought going into the flavour combinations, the textural elements, the overall nutritional content and purpose of the dish. So, on that note, this is my maths for what is a pretty novel, healthy and absolutely delicious breakfast. Something delicious enough to be a dessert, but healthy enough to start your day with, guilt free.

In order to beat the traffic, I get to work early and eat my breakfast at my desk while I check through my emails. It’s usually some form of oats with cultured dairy (yoghurt or buttermilk), fruit and nuts & seeds. Carrot Cake Bircher muesli is a firm favourite, but requires a bit more prep than I can usually be bothered with, so that’s more a once every few months deal. My most regular staple is cold-brewed coffee overnight oats. Caffeine + whole grain awesomeness in one bowl. Soak it overnight, then add some fruit (usually bananas, prunes or berries) crunchy nuts and/or seeds before eating. It is so good and portable….but you’re left with dishes. That’s absolutely fine at work, where there’s a kitchen to do the dishes. But I needed a no-dishes portable breakfast. Something still full of healthy whole grains, the fruit and nuts and….the coffee. All in one. Enter the breakfast espresso jelly cookie.

I decided to stick with the elements of my coffee oats and layered based on wanting different textures. So we have two different ‘cookies’, the bottom is a chewy oat and banana cookie – making up the oat and fruit content of my breakfast. The middle is coffee jelly. This idea came from using excess sangria jelly in my granola to delicious effect. And the top is a nuts and seed granola ‘cookie’ to emulate the nutty crunch of my topping on my oats. I threw in some chocolate because…well, why not? My palate is decided not ‘sweet’, especially in the morning, so feel free to customize by adding ¼ cup of sugar to the espresso jelly (I have my long blacks without sugar normally). The honey in the cookies is more than sufficient for me.

And, if you don’t need the portability, serve with honey whipped ricotta or yoghurt. (Or ice cream!!)

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie
Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Healthy Espresso Jelly Breakfast Sandwich Cookies

(Makes 12 formed cookies)

Espresso Jelly

6tbsp ground coffee beans
500mL freshly boiled water
5 tsp powdered gelatin

Lightly spray a lamington tin with cooking spray. Put the coffee beans into a plunger and pour over the boiled water. Leave for 5 minutes, then plunge and pour into a bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top of the coffee and whisk in until dissolved. Pour into the lamington tin and put in the fridge to set for at least 4 hours.

When set, cut into rounds with an egg ring. Chop the excess bits up and serve them with normal oats.

Banana Oat Cookies

3 small very ripe bananas
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp chia seeds
½ cup water
2/3 cup shredded coconut
1 2/3 cup rolled oats

Preheat oven to 165C

In a small bowl, mix the chia seeds and water and set aside to form a gel.

In a large bowl, mash the bananas until smooth, then mix in the spices and honey. Add the chia seed mix, stirring to combine evenly. Then add the oats and stir to coat.

Line a baking tray and lightly grease an egg ring.Place a few tablespoonsful of mixture into the ring and press in tightly with the back of a spoon. Gently lift off the ring, and form the rest of the cookies.

Bake for 10 minutes, or until starting to turn golden on top. Remove, gently flip over the biscuits and bake for a further 10 minutes, until that side is also golden. Cool for 10 minutes on the trays, then on racks.

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie
Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie
Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Chocolate Nut Brittle Biscuits

1 ½ tbsp. cacao powder
3 tbsp cacao nibs
1/3 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
1/3 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup pumpkin seeds
2/3 cup almonds, roughly chopped
1 tbsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp pepper
3 tbsp honey
3 tbsp olive oil

Heat the oven to 165C

Mix the nuts, seeds and cacao nibs together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the oil, cacao powder, pepper, salt, vanilla, honey and oil. Make sure it is well combined. Pour the nut mix into the wet mix and stir to thoroughly coat everything.

Line a tray with baking paper, and lightly grease an egg ring. Place a few tablespoons of mixture into the ring and press it in tightly, pressing down with the back of a spoon. Gently remove the ring, and repeat for the rest of the mixture.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until caramelised and 'solid'. The mixture will spread a little, but still retain the basic round shape. Cool on the trays. Trim the edges to neaten your sandwiches.

Layer one oat cookie, espresso jelly then a nut brittle cookie on top. If you assemble, wrap and store in the fridge. They will last a few days. The cookies will last up to a week separate at room temperature in air tight containers. Store the jelly in the fridge.

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie
Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Showing Your Working - Healthy Espresso Jelly Sandwich Breakfast Cookie

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Breakfast of Champions - Coffee and Mango Chia Pudding

You’ll remember I was coffee-soaking oats for breakfast a while back. I still do that. It’s still delicious. You should still do it. (And incidentally, with these colder Autumn mornings, you should cook your oats in coffee). But my feeds were full of chia puddings, and so was my pantry so I thought I would just slightly alter my work breakfast of choice. Our mango tree was amazingly prolific this season. At final count we got 56 (!!) mangoes, so I knew that this would be an ingredient. Mango and coffee match really well even though at first thought they might seem odd together – the smoky bitterness of the coffee complements the sweetness of the mango. The ginger and cinnamon just round out the flavours and create quite a complex flavour profile. I don’t have a lot of sweet foods in my diet – I naturally crave salt – so the sweetness of the ripe mangoes was sweet enough for me. But feel free to add honey or maple syrup to sweeten things up.

I also eat mine with plain greek yoghurt for the same reason, substitute with a sweeter style yoghurt, or even cream or coconut cream for a more decadent breakfast. And finally, you can substitute whatever crunchy add-ons you have. I’m currently addicted to bee pollen. I first had it when I went to Germany around 16 years ago and am so glad it’s fairly readily available here now. I often just sprinkle some on nut butters on fruit toast, or on top of smoothies. Divine

Coffee and Mango Chia Pudding
(one serve)
¼ cup chia seeds
1/3 cup cold-brewed coffee
1 mango, finely diced
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ginger
Dollop greek yoghurt to serve
Toasted walnuts, coconut and bee pollen to serve

Mix the chia seeds, ginger and cinnamon (I shake it in a jar). Add the coffee and mango, stir well. Leave to sit at least 15-30 minutes for the chia seeds to swell. Add more coffee if it looks like some of the seeds didn’t turn gel-y. (I usually make this before bed and take it to work in the morning)

Serve with yoghurt drizzled with your crunchy add ons


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Breakfast of Champions - Coffee, Oats and Yoghurt

I think I’ve mentioned in a few posts that I have been aiming to be healthier. Over the past few years, I have lost a fair amount of weight, and I have been asked numerous times what it is that I’m “doing”. I kind of dislike labelling the way I eat because it automatically adds rules and judgements which I try to avoid. For me, eating healthily just translates into cooking from whole foods. I cook about 95% of my homecooked meals from scratch and I try not to snack too often on pre-packaged stuff like chips and biscuits. Unless it’s a weekend, I’m entertaining and I can’t pass up a packet of Red Rock Deli lime and black pepper chips!

So, as a simple answer to what I’m doing to lose weight – it’s this blog. It’s cooking. This blog is a diary of the actual foods that I eat. Everything on here I have cooked and eaten. With the exception of things like the cakes and biscuits that are for an event – Mothers’ Day, birthdays, etc. – it is just what I had to eat day-to-day. But food is my life – I love cooking it, eating it, and sharing it. So sometimes I’m going to eat that sort of stuff too, so that stuff will also go on the blog. Apart from eating my own cooking, I am working on being a more mindful eater at all times – at home and out at restaurants etc to reduce my portion sizes to more reasonable amounts. This on top of 3 gym sessions a week is what I’m “doing” to improve my overall wellbeing and as a by-product, my weight.

Noticing that I haven’t really included much by way of breakfasts – even though it’s my favourite meal of the day, I thought today I will post my current work-day staple. Given that it’s summer, instead of having porridge, I have oats and Greek Yoghurt. I soak my oats overnight to soften them, and I have started using coffee to soak them in. So. Good. I eat this every day at work, and tend to steer towards eggs and/or toast on the weekends. Work day lunches are generally leftovers and dinner is open!

I’ve recently discovered the joys of cold brewing things. On Sunday nights I will grind some coffee beans and put them in a coffee plunger. I pour cold water over the top, cover it with plastic wrap, put it in the fridge and allow it to brew overnight. When you wake up, you just push the plunger down and BAM! Perfect ice coffee. I make it strong (1 cup coffee to 4 cups water), then dilute with water and/or milk depending on what I’m feeling like or some maple syrup if I feel like some sweetness. The jug will do Lance and I for a almost a week that way. I have started using the same technique for ice tea too. In both drinks it prevents the bitterness you get from hot brewed drinks that have been cooled.
Coffee, Oats and Yoghurt
1/3 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup cold brewed coffee
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ginger
6 prunes, chopped small
8-10 walnuts, roughly chopped
To serve
4-5 heaped tablespoons plain Greek Yoghurt (around 150-200g)

In a container with a lid put the oats and spices, put the lid on and shake to mix. Pour the coffee over the top. Add the chopped prunes and walnut pieces to the top of that. Put in the fridge overnight.

When ready to eat, take out, spoon the yoghurt over the top and mix it all together really well.

Caffeine, protein, fibre, fruit, good fats. Breakfast of champions.