Daily Archives: November 24, 2008

Carrot Muffins

Just before dinner tonight, Indira said “Mama, what can I take for gouter tomorrow?”

Tomorrow being Tuesday, they will be going swimming again from school , and I know she enjoys having a special gouter to eat on the bus coming back, rather than the usual clementine or apple slices.  So I suggested that I could make some carrot cake, since this is a current favorite with her.

She was quite pleased with the idea, but requested that I make muffins, instead of a cake, so that is what I did.

The recipe is the same as for the carrot cake that I wrote about recently, except that I put the mixture in to muffin trays, and the total baking time was around 15 minutes shorter than it would have been for the cake.

I don’t know what it is about muffins – but I do believe the ones I have made tonight taste nicer than the cake I made the last time with the same recipe (I have been eating the bits stuck to the muffin tray)

Two small changes that I made – I skipped the vanilla essence this time; and I used a wheat flour available here that is called “semi-complet” ; it is sort of halfway between the whole wheat and refined kind. it makes the muffins more prone to breaking if not handled carefully when you are taking them out of the tray-though they hold just fine after that- but I don’t like the idea of using refined flour too much because it is “empty” calories, as they say.

With half the quantities as in the recipe for the cake, I was able to make 12 muffins.

And now, I will need to try and resist a midnight snack !

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Filed under Breakfast Ideas, Cakes and Muffins, Picnic Food, Starters and Snacks

“It’s like kheer!”-Porridge with Dates and Walnuts

That is how one friend, Sarita, described this combination, after she tried it out.

It is what Indira and Noor used to eat for breakfast quite often when they were younger, and they really loved it.

When they were babies, too, their favorite food was cooked oats mixed with banana, and I even carried a box of oats with me(along with other cereals) as a standby option when we traveled, in case they did not like whatever was on offer. Oats can be cooked so easily and quickly as long as there is a microwave available, and banana is a fruit that is pretty ubiquitous.

I add dates now sometimes, instead of banana, to sweeten the oats and milk, and some walnuts and/or almonds.

This is another breakfast food that always puts a smile in my stomach !

Porridge with Dates and Walnuts

2-3 tablespoons of quick cooking oats

120-150 ml of skimmed or half-fat milk

4-5 soft, seedless dates chopped fine (or half a banana, chopped fine)

1 tablespoon of walnuts (chopped or in larger chunks, as you like them)

3-4 almonds,preferably soaked overnight, then peeled and either chopped or sliced(you could use them without soaking them first, too, though I believe soaking overnight makes them easier to digest. For more on that, see here http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20060929121033AA7Lfj2)

Combine the milk and the oats in a micro-wave proof bowl and cook uncovered at 750W for 2 minutes. At the end of this time, the oats will have almost started to boil over. Watch out for this and take the oats out before this happens.

Turn the oats and milk mixture over in to a cereal bowl. Add the chopped dates and walnuts(plus the almonds, if you are using them), and a little more milk if the consistency is too thick. Stir to mix everything well.

Enjoy !!

It’s a warm, satisfying, delicious and healthy start to the day.

A variation -simply soak the nuts and oatmeal together in the milk for 20-30 minutes before you are ready to eat.

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Filed under Breakfast Ideas