Monthly Archives: January 2012

Aside

The skies were dark, the wind was howling, I looked out onto the street in front of our little house and not a soul in sight.  I jumped back into bed and decided that I was not getting back out again today!  After much sulking, I decided that I would have to get up.  Unimpressed and dressed like a Eskimo, I headed down stairs.  Realising that my mood was not the best (and the weather was partly to blame for this) I decided to have a cup of ambition to get me started.  Now I am sure that there are people out there, who feel my suffering.  I just can not function properly without my morning cup of coffee.  It is the only cup that I will drink for the day but I simply can not wake up properly without one.

While my brain was working at a million miles an hour, contemplating what to do on this typical Irish rainy day, I pondered on what to have for breakfast.  Yes I am a huge breakfast fan.  A food fan in general, but I love my breakfast.  It is such an important meal to start the day and eating the right power foods can really get those brain cells working and I need every working cell I can get!

As I rummaged through the kitchen cupboards, it started to look like a full Irish breakfast was on the cards. I knew that my Fiancé would be a happy man! But I continued to search the cupboards, simply because I was being lazy and the thought of standing over a stove for longer than 10 minutes this morning was deeply depressing.  It was at this time, that I found an old-time favourite.

Good old-fashioned Irish oats.

The cold rainy dark day outside, begged me to make something warm, creamy and nourishing and this was it!  It was as if it was sent from the gloomy skies above!

Not only is oats such a simple and quick breakfast dish to make, it beats the spattering of oil, from frying those eggs and the health benefits are tremendous. This humble heart-warming favourite, aids in lowering bad cholesterol and makes for a happy heart, it is also packed full of fibre which is beneficial for improved intestinal health. As an added treat, I add a tablespoon of bran a few blueberries, a dash of cinnamon and a generous spoonful of honey and l have a wholesome hearty breakfast.

Irish Oats

Serves 1 person

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons Irish Oats

1 Tablespoon Irish Bran

270ml Milk

Pinch of salt

Sprinkle of cinnamon

Method

Put oats and bran into a small pot.  Add the milk and over a moderate heat, bring to the boil.  Stirring continuously ensuring that it does not stick to the bottom of the pot.  When the oats starts boiling, add the pinch of salt and cinnamon.

Reduce the heat and continue to stir for 1-2 minutes.

Spoon oats into a porridge bowl and add a generous handful of blueberries and a spoonful of honey.

For a slightly more indulgent breakfast, every once in a while why not use half cream and half milk.  The creaminess caresses your taste buds and sets you straight for a great day!

Enjoy your hearty wholesome breakfast!!

Heart healthy oats

Old fashioned oats

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Aside

I woke up to the sun streaming through the blind of the bedroom window, which is an unusual sight for an early winters morning in Ireland.  The glistening sunshine made me feel alive with energy and although it did not inspire me to go on an early morning walk, it did however make me feel that lying in bed on such a beautiful morning would be very unproductive.  With this lust for life, I leaped to the kitchen.  Whilst sipping a freshly brewed cup of coffee, I stared into the back yard and I decided to surprise my Fiancé with a fresh batch of his favourite bran muffins. Not only could he eat an entire batch, but the aromatic aroma that fills the entire house is a sure way of getting him out of bed and drawing him to the kitchen!

The beauty of these blissful bran muffins is that you can prepare the mixture the night before – ideal if you don’t have much time on your hands in the morning!  All you have to do in the morning is pop them into the oven.

Blissful Bran Muffins

Ingredients

185 g Plain Flour

1 Teaspoon Ground cinnamon

1 Teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda

110g Firmly packed brown sugar

105g Unprocessed bran

105g Coarsely chopped seedless dates

1 Egg

375ml Buttermilk

125ml Vegetable oil

Method

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Sift all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and add the chopped seedless dates.

Whisk together the egg, buttermilk and vegetable oil

The mixture should be lumpy and take note to not over mix.   Cover the mixture and refrigerate in you are wanting to bake in the morning.

If baking right away, grease a 12 hole muffin pan.

Spoon muffin mixture into the pan holes and bake for about 25-30 minutes until muffins are browned and risen.

Once muffins are done, remove from the pan and stand on a wire rack to cool.

These muffins can either be served warm with butter and marmalade or plain.

Blissful Bran Muffins