Tag Archives: easy recipe

Chocolate granola bars with cranberry & almond flakes

22 Aug

A snack for the road…

We are back from our holidays destination and this was our snack for the trip (to not from), but I am posting the recipe now. Better late than never, they say. Truth is, before we left I prepared the greek text and assumed that I would do this one during my time off. We had various devices with us and plenty of free time. What better to do on your free time, right? I never ever thought, that I would be without internet connection, or even mobile reception for most of my stay in that remote little village on the mountain.

Shock and horror, but after a while I just got bored of having to climb on the tree to get some 3G reception, so I just went with the flow and wire- and reception- less. And guess what? I survived!!!!!!I am really proud of myself, I have to admit.

Here is the recipe for the snack that I prepared for the road trip and to take with us to the beach. You could say they are on the “healthy” side as they have oatmeal and nuts. The bars are on the crunchy side the first day but they get softer and chewier the following days. You can pretty much adapt them to your liking, I just used what I had left in my cupboards. They are also a perfect pre workout snack (something I haven’t done in a couple of weeks though). The addition of chocolate and cranberry makes them a bit sweeter than I would have liked, so have that in mind.

(don’t you just love those little bags?)

Chocolate granola bars with cranberry and almond flakes

recipe adapted from here

Ingredients
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup dried cranberry
1/4 cup almond flakes
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup honey
1 egg (small), beaten
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
——-
Preheat the oven to 170C.
Line a 20x20cm (8inch) square baking with parchment paper (let it hang from the sides).
In a large bowl, mix oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, flour, salt, chocolate chips, almond flakes and cranberry.
Add remaining ingredients, gently mixing it all together.
Press the mixture with the back of a spoon or your hands into prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. Cut the bars when they are still warm (either wise they will be too hard and difficult to cut).
Advertisements

Lentil quinoa salad

11 Jul

My friends and people who know me, know that I tend to eat things that are not very common and popular (I am talking about this corner of the earth) and that my hobbies have included not so popular/common choices  (like dj-ing, aerial yoga, baking etc).

Baking has been the most popular, I think, and has devotees (as they get to eat loads of sweets) and also because the cooking part is usually with more “experimental” and “uncommon” ingredients (again, for the Greek standards).

In general, I have  very boring and plain meals, most of them comprise of plain salad greens (no fancy croutons or dressings), boiled vegetables, legumes and grains (if Mr. Dietitian allows me). Also, most of my meals are consumed in the office, so I need to prepare meals (at least a day before, or longer) that can be easily packed, transferred and consumed among people (so, no smelly or garlicky food for me).

I’ve drifted here a lot…. Those “uncommon” or experimental ingredients mentioned above are usually found in Asian stores or stores that carry healthy/bio foods and products. One such ingredient is quinoa which is widely popular (not so much in Greece though, but it’s becoming used more and more lately). I must have discovered it in one of my trips to Germany (I usually bring back local/unknown food stuff when I travel), but they do sell it here as well now. Dear judge G_ of course won’t go near stuff like that (usually healthy stuff), even if I try to bribe him with money or anything else.

I think he fears for his life or something and doesn’t trust me (or my food choices). It just happened though, that  I made this at some get together with friends (mostly cause I wanted to eat it and bring some of the leftovers to the office) and he decided that this salad is  “f****** amazing”. Small victories, my friends, small victories!!!! I wanted to crack open the champagne, but I restrained myself (I didn’t even have to sneak it into a recipe, nor did I “advertise” this salad to him).

Anyways…. If you have eaten quinoa, you know what to expect. If not, I hope that I might have convinced you to try it, if not, you might acquire a taste for it at some point in this life.

I made it and served in my balcony (did I mention the nearly 40C/104F weather?) drizzled with balsamic glaze,  a sprinkle of my favorite spices mix called  Toque Iberico (found in supermarkets in Spain and in my house-seriously if you ever go to Spain, look for it) and some extra lime.

A few words about the recipe:

  • I’ve used the white quinoa variety, but you might be lucky enough to find the black or red one (or get the package that has all of them – super yummy and crunchy, my favorite)
  • if you don’t want to use quinoa, or can’t find it, you can substitute it with cous cous (I’d prefer the bulgur one, but I guess the Israeli one will work perfectly)
  • you can add ingredients of your preference (like zucchini, avocado, spring onions, feta cheese, mushrooms etc)
  • can be eaten as a side dish or main course

Lentil quinoa salad

recipe adapted from Food Network

Ingredients

1 cup (170gr) quinoa (uncooked)
2 cups water
½ cup (88gr) lentils (uncooked)
8-10 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
2 peppers
4-5 tBsps finely chopped parsley (or fresh coriander if you prefer)

for the vinaigrette (I haven’t written quantities, it’s up to you how much you will use)
Olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lime juice, mustard,  lime zest
salt, pepper, chilli flakes, garlic powder

Directions

Put the quinoa in a sieve and rinse in cold water. In a small pot with a lid, simmer it with 2 cups of water (or less if you prefer it al dente) . Quinoa should be tender enough to eat, but with a little “pop” upon biting.

Put the lentils in a sieve and rinse in cold water. In a saucepan, simmer the lentils in water until they are tender, but not mushy, about 20 minutes. Drain and rinse so that they cool down (it will stop them from getting softer).

In a small jar throw the wet ingredients of the vinaigrette (balsamic vinegar, lime juice, mustard,  lime zest), place the lid and shake gently so that they blend.

Salad assembly: in a container with a lid, mix the quinoa, lentil, peppers, cherry tomatoes, parsley,  the dry spices (salt, pepper, garlic powder, chilli flakes -to taste, according to personal preference) and pour the vinegrette (you might need to shake it a bit before pouring). Place the lid of the container and gently again shake it (up-down & left -right) so that they ingredients blend together.

You can serve it immediately or put it in the fridge for a couple of hours so that it chills and the aromas of the herbs and spices blend together.

If you like, you can drizzle some balsamic glaze before serving.

Chocolate cookies and cream ice cream (with coconut milk)

9 Jul

Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please!

I finally got an ice cream maker (as a birthday present, thanks to my cousin and his family-you will not regret it, I swear!).

And the timing couldn’t be more appropriate, as the temperature seems to rise (I think something like 39 C / over 100F ) and the heat makes it unbearable to do anything. I didn’t go to the beach this weekend (as nearly every person living in Greece did), of course, but I spent Saturday morning outside running errands and shopping, as well as attending my regular weekly (midday) aerial yoga class (which thanks to the weather was a HOT aerial yoga class). When I went back home, I was ready to lay my body on the marble floor, underneath the A/C (trust me it’s the best thing for instant cooling), but the thought of the ice cream attachment cooling in the freezer kept me going.

I prepared a quick and easy recipe, with only 4 ingredients (plus 1 I added), to test drive my new toy. The choice of a chocolate recipe was not a very clever one (at least not in a white kitchen), but at least I could see the splatter on the walls easier than if it was a vanilla one.

I also decided that my kitchen was not hot enough, so I baked some cookie cups/”beds” for the ice cream, from cookie dough I had in my freezer (I always save some when I prepare cookies). You can see them below, they turned out lovely (at least half of them), a sugar cookie dough cup/bed, sprinkled with fuchsia sprinkles for the girls (matching my new nail polish).

Plain for the guys, on a “bed of a white choc chip cookie”. Served and consumed outside, on the balcony or in the garden (if you have one).

Α few words about the recipe:

  • It’s super easy, with only 4+1 ingredients, it really reminded me of chocolate milk (with a coconut twist)
  • It doesn’t contain any eggs, as I have a thing with using not sufficiently cooked ones in desserts
  • If you don’t have an ice cream machine, I guess you can do it manually like I did in this recipe
  • The recipe below makes about half a kilo ice cream (1 pint)
  • the cookie cups/”beds” were made from two different doughs I had stored in my freezer, one classic vanilla cookie recipe and the other this recipe

Chocolate cookies and cream ice cream (with coconut milk)

recipe barely adapted from Two Peas & their Pod

1 (400ml) can coconut milk
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
10 Oreos, crushed

1 tBsp. rum (optional)

Directions

Combine the coconut milk, sugar, cocoa powder and rum in the mixer bowl (or a blender, or mix by hand)  and mix for 30 seconds or until all the ingredients are combined.Chill the mixture for an hour (if you can, or more).

Pour the liquid mixture into the bowl of an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. During the last 5 minutes of churning, add the crushed Oreos.

When it is ready, transfer the ice cream to a plastic container, cover, and freeze until ready to eat.

Spinach Burgers

13 Jun

In case you are wondering, I am not one of those eccentric ladies who only eat one color of food. If you think so though, I know that I can’t do much to change it, as the only food I have posted here is green.


As I’ve mentioned before, I am on a diet. The cakes and cookies I’ve been making are part of my evil plan to fatten everyone around me, so that I will look leaner and more restrained. I am kidding…. when I was a kid I was quite “plump” and whenever something sweet entered the house, my mom made sure to get rid of it as soon as possible.  Truth is, I don’t have much of  a sweet tooth, I’d rather eat a huge bowl of pop corn than ice cream (I can’t just have one cracker or one crisp, if the bag open it has to go or be eaten). But since I’ve have the tendency to put on weight, there goes this recipe… (with a little cheese on top)

If you are not interested in something healthy and low-cal, please come back in a couple days, I’ll make it up to you, I promise.

A few words about the recipe: Continue reading

“Healthy” banana, coconut and chocolate oatmeal cookies

11 Jun

The word healthy is in brackets because one could argue that these are healthy. But compared to what I have made and what I am going to make in the future, these are healthy (of course if you scroll a bit further down you will notice that I have managed to “amend” the healthy side bit).

I wanted to make something sweet, but healthy, that will give a boost  of energy to my gym friends, before or after working out. Something that one can eat without feeling (too) guilty and won’t have to to spend 3 days on the treadmill to burn it off. I wouldn’t want them to think that I am sabotaging their “summer 2012 bikini/swimsuit” mission.

I am also trying to take into consideration this blog’s main judge, who, is not really fond of my attempts to sneak vegetables or “healthy stuff” into his diet (like this  and that). Since I can’t deny the fact that these fall into the “healthy stuff” category, I thought I could get away by camouflaging them a bit…

You see where I am going with these, right? I baked some of the cookies in my mini muffin pan, so I got some cookie-muffins, perfect as a base for a scoop of ice cream. The ice cream is unfortunately not home made. I feel shame just by writing it, but since I don’t have an ice cream maker we still buy it.

Anyway…. this is how I de-healthified (is there such a word, really?)  something relatively healthy….

Warning: this is not a sushi, so please don’t shove it in your mouth in one go, or you will get a brain-freeze (true story)

A few words about this recipe: Continue reading

Chocolate muffins

7 Jun

I’ve been seeing chocolate everywhere. I guess there are other sweets around me, but my system refuses to acknowledge anything else.

The chocolate I’ve been seeing, comes in fancy forms and shapes, unlike those simple looking (but “effective” I have to add) muffins, but since I’ve been away this long weekend (we had Monday off) and I’m working a more-than-full time job, it’s quite difficult for me to find the peace and quiet I need in order to bake something (it’s sorta my meditation time). So, the green mixer had the time off.

And no, if you are wondering, we didn’t go to the beach for the first of the year swim/sunburn/or ice cream (important milestones in ones summer, in Greece). We had a wedding to attend, in a small village, resulting coming back to an empty fridge and cupboards.

But I was not feeling good about not making and posting anything here, so I managed to make these muffins, which disappeared as quickly as it took me to make them. No one ever denies a chocolate treat, for sure (ok, I may have delivered a couple to friends personally).

I found this recipe on Pinterest. I’ve been resisting it for some time now, although I had registered a long time ago, but due to peer group pressure (yeah, I’m not 16, I know), I jumped on the pinterest wagon at last and created some boards. I wonder if I will manage to find time to follow everything.

A few words about the recipe

  • Quick and easy recipe, perfect for breakfast or/and to accompany coffee (they are made and eaten on the spot) and the muffins are not overly sweet
  • if you like nuts, feel free to add some, it will be a good idea
  • if you are not very fond of coffee or don’t have instant espresso you can omit it from the recipe Continue reading
%d bloggers like this: