Oatmeal, cinnamon, bananas and berries. Humble, and so satisfying. I’ve been devouring these oatmeal bars after being up in the night with our four month old son Oscar. (Oats are great for nursing!) These bars are simple to make and I’ve even served them as a make-ahead breakfast for overnight guests. Recipe makes 10 servings, but you can easily half it. I’ve also packaged and frozen these individually and they still taste delicious.
baked oatmeal bars
4 ripe bananas cut into slices
2 cups thawed and drained frozen blueberries or mixed berries (can also use fresh)
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 cups large flake oats
1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups milk
1 tbsp vanilla
coconut oil for greasing baking dish
Heat oven to 350 degrees and generously grease a 9 x 13 (or similar size) baking dish with coconut oil. Layer the bananas, then half of the berries. Bake for 20 minutes. In a separate bowl mix the oats, salt, cinnamon and baking powder. Pour over the bananas, gently pressing down with your hands. Then combine the milk, maple syrup, eggs and vanilla and pour over the oats and bananas. Sprinkle remaining berries and walnuts on top and bake for 35-40 minutes until top is golden brown. Let cool, slice into desired slices and enjoy!
Two pints of fresh blueberries plus lemon zest go into this cake. It’s so delicious it got half eaten by Neil and my Dad before I could shoot it! Truth be told, I had a big slice too. The recipe was a childhood favourite of Neil’s that his stepmother Liz used to make every summer when local blueberries were in season. So I give you photos of a half eaten cake that was so good it couldn’t sit on the counter untouched any longer. The recipe feeds at least 8. And it’s wonderful with a side of ice cream or whipped cream.
Ingredients for the cake:
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup soft butter
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup milk (I use almond milk)
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla
2 pints fresh blueberries (or 2 and 1/2 cups)
Ingredients for the crumble topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup soft butter
1/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Mix flour, baking powder, salt and spices. Then using a spatula whip the butter with the wet ingredients and then combine with the blueberries. Mix the crumble topping ingredients with a fork until it looks like small pebbles. Grease a large deep pie plate or 8 inch spring form pan. Pour into greased dish and top with crumble. Bake 350 degrees about 40 minutes until a knife inserted comes out clean. Be sure to place a cookie sheet under the dish when baking. Sometimes those sneaky blueberries can really expand. Enjoy as dessert or in the morning with coffee.
It’s spring in Toronto. Days are longer, nights are shorter and the tulips and birds are making their appearance. This time of year has me wanting a refreshing, but satisfying breakfast.
Tea and homemade granola (my mango coconut granola post here) are two of my favourite things. So when Alokozay Tea asked me to create a recipe with their loose leaf earl grey tea, breakfast granola was the first thing that came to mind. I sipped this classic tea as I made the granola and what’s not to love about a food product that’s delicious and can be delivered to your door after easily ordering online? Earl grey tea traditionally has great floral and citrus notes so adding dried wild blueberries and lemon juice to the granola keeps it light tasting and extremely addictive. This recipe made enough for six generous servings over yogurt at home, plus two portions I gifted away to friends. Keeps well once completely cooled in an air tight container for two weeks, or freezes well.
wild blueberry earl grey granola
5 tbsp brewed Alokozay Earl Grey Loose Leaf tea
1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 and 2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 cup chopped almonds or sunflower seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
juice of half a small lemon
1 cup dried wild blueberries
Brew 1 heaping tablespoon of loose leaf earl grey tea to 2/3 cup of water. Mix wet ingredients and add to dry. (Leave out the blueberries.) Pour into a glass baking dish and bake on the middle rack at 300 degrees for 35-40 minutes. (A dark metal pan can quickly burn granola, so use glass if you can, if all you have on hand is metal then reduce the heat to 250 degrees.) Stir every 10 minutes. Remove from oven and toss in the dried wild blueberries. Let cool before storing. Delicious with plain yogurt or as a breakfast cereal. Enjoy!
Ps. Want a coupon for Alokozay Tea, Friendly Food Snobs? Check out this link. Alokozay Tea is available for purchase at Metro, Bulk Barn and Food Basics and Adonis.
I heard stories about a sweet potato smoothie. Cautious, yet optimistic I decided to try it out for myself. With this recipe I was hooked. Think less sweet potato-y, and more creamy and delicious smoothie. Perfect for cold winter mornings when you want the benefits of a smoothie, but need a break from the green ones. Enjoy!
sweet potato smoothie
1 large sweet potato (boiled or steamed and peeled)
2 medjool dates
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup water
1/4 cup almond milk
1 scoop protein powder (I like sprouted brown rice)
I boil the sweet potato the night before and peel it cold in the morning. Combine all ingredients in blender. Makes two beautiful servings.
Sundays often start around here with these high-protein pancakes. Full of oats, egg, cinnamon and fruit they keep us full long past lunch. My dream Sunday starts with these pancakes and ends with a clean house, full fridge and cup of peppermint tea sipped curled up on the couch. Between those two events, there’s a lot of room to slow down and feel joy. This recipe has actually been taped to the inside of my kitchen cupboard for years. It even moved into our new house with us. Tattered and taped and all. It’s a winner. Hope you enjoy them. Makes four pancakes. [Update from March 2019: I now have two young boys and to serve my family of four I double this recipe below. Growing family = more food!]
1/2 cup oats
1/2 flour or gluten-free all purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon each baking powder and baking soda
1 small banana mashed
2 tablespoons plain yogurt (balkan or greek full fat)
1/4 cup almond milk (or your fave milk, dairy works)
1 teaspoon vanilla
cinnamon to taste
toppings: maple syrup, butter, berries
butter or coconut oil for cooking
Combine all ingredients. You can use a whisk and bowl, or throw it all into the blender and blitz it (I usually do blender). Let sit for five minutes for optimal fluffiness. Heat a non stick pan and lightly coat with butter or coconut oil. Pour a fourth of the batter into pan. I make these one by one and keep the rest warmed in a 200 degree oven. Feel free to add any fruit or nuts you like, or a scoop of plant based protein powder or ground flax seed for more protein. Note: if I let the batter sit for more than five minutes in the blender I sometimes need to add a touch more almond milk to loosen it. Hope you enjoy!