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What about a Healthy & Festive Sunday Family Brunch?

Thinking about it with a mature mind, I do not think there was something more enjoyable as a child than brunching with my family on the Sundays. We actually were only doing it rarely, as it was a special occasion treat, such as for birthdays or bank holidays. But every single time, the whole process of preparing it was grandiose! At that point, the part I was missioned to take care of was the table decoration, and I did adore it; taking our nicest plates out, elegant and shiny glasses and cutlery placed all around evenly, a few flowers here and there. That part did not really changed from what it is today; what has changed is actually the food we prepare (or I prepare for most times haha!). Back then, brunching would mean eating white bread, Nutella, cheese, delicatessen, butter and so on. But now, brunching means something totally different: rye bread toasts, spreads, buckwheat pancakes, chia puddings, fruit salads, smoothies…! And I believe this change is for the better; it’s not only healthier but more colourful, livelier and much funnier to prepare and arrange (but it takes a little more time!)…

As I have now started my second year of International Relations Studies at the university, I am back to my working and very busy self. But things have changed a whole lot in comparison with the end of my first year – especially “mindset-wise” I would say. As I expected, now that I’ve got my head back into the political and diplomatic world, daydreaming about my dream career is again one my daily occupations. But now, it involves both the blogging and yoga world, or at least put these two in a much higher position than before. With all these ambitious and bright dreams in mind, I am starting again with confidence and determination. Wish me luck, there are still four years to go!

All of this to say that there are three things I wanted to celebrate this week, that actually happened on the 21st of September. I created and share this festive brunch with you all today for the following three reasons, that all mean something to me in their own way. You’ll understand the reasons of my talking about my university life in a minute…

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HeForShe’s Two Years Anniversary – An equality movement initiated by the United Nations for Women, energetically represented by Emma Watson (British actress and Goodwill Ambassador for UN Women), it has now reached over a billion commitments, from World leaders, CEOs, University’s directors, stars and more importantly, from millions of people like us. It is a liberation movement, which aims at promoting gender equality in all areas of life, at giving the word “feminism” its genuine definition back, at empowering women and gathering women AND men under the same ideal: stepping forward and speaking up for what is the key of tomorrow’s world – gender equality. I discovered it just before starting university, and I must admit that I fell in love directly, not only for its progressive and tolerant approach, but for it’s way to meet with today’s world circumstances and for it’s beautiful goals. One of the things that matters to me the most? Putting an end to gender stereotypes, to live in world with love and acceptance, without judgments. (Click on the link below to make the commitment as well!)

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International Alzheimer’s Day – This is an illness that means a lot to me, especially for one of the person I love the most on this earth suffers from it. There are plenty of books and documentaries that will explain the whole scientific aspect of it way better than I could; what I wanted to say today is that this illness not only affects the person who is suffering from it, but all her relatives and beloved ones. It really is hard to see someone’s memory flying away, taking all the reason out of this special someone with it. But one quickly learns to accept it as it is. Indeed, what comes to mind at first is to think that ill people are sad and that their life now is pointless – but this is all but true! When I see the sparkle in her eyes, her smile, her footsteps on Glenn Miller’s music and her interest in things I show her, I do understand that she is happy, no matter if she forgot a few details of her life, routine or even, sometimes, a few of her reflexes. This is to every single person that suffers from Alzheimer’s disease on this planet – no matter what happens, no matter what age you are and at what stage you are, you are loved, respected and hopefully, taken good care of.

If you haven’t seen the film “Still Alice” with the gorgeous and talented Julianne Moore, well do it! It really is moving and eye-opening, revealing the truth about an illness that used to be misunderstood.

The Autumn Equinox – As it is a little less important, it comes to the end. Yet, stepping out of summer and into autumn pretty is a big thing don’t you think? With its cold weather, chilly wind, reflecting blue puddles, hot cacaos, piles of red and orange leaves, autumn kind is one of my favourite season (with spring…and winter haha!). And the fresh breeze of autumn also brings along a whole lot of beautifully delicious fruits and vegetables, that I cannot wait to use in my kitchen! Enjoy these first days of autumn my dears, and for that, there’s not such thing than a Festive Sunday Brunch!

Berry Buckwheat Pancakes

These pancakes are a simple mind-blowing healthy and light version, once tested, that you’d like to have in your plate every single morning. Replacing half of the oats with buckwheat flour actually gives them a nice profound earthy taste, that goes wonderfully with the nutty almond taste. I created this recipe almost at the same time as my blog, but needed to make it perfect before sharing it with you – it is not a vegan version, which is a shame. For you my dear vegans, you could try and replace the eggs with chia eggs (3 tbsp of chia & 10 tbsp of lukewarm water – mix and let sit for 10 minutes), but I have not tested it yet so cannot approve it. But surely try and let me know by sending picture or a comment below! Anyway, these little pancakes do taste deliciously, but they are even better when topped with fresh red fruits and a flood of maple – yes a flood –, bee pollen, almond butter and any type of lovey topping you’d like actually!

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Ingredients

Portions: 4 servings.

Preparation time: 30 minutes.

Cooking time: 20 minutes.

For the pancakes:

  • 75g of oats
  • 75g buckwheat flour
  • 30g of ground almonds
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 2 tbsp of chia seeds
  • 175ml of plantbased milk (almond, spelt or oat)
  • 3 large free-range eggs
  • 1 – 2 tsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • Coconut oil

For the toppings:

  • Almond butter
  • Fresh berries (raspberries, blueberries, etc.)
  • Bee pollen
  • Maple syrup
  • Edible flowers

Method

(1) Start by blending your oats in a food processor; your looking for a fine flour consistency. Add it to a large mixing bowl, along with the buckwheat flour, ground almonds, baking soda, chia seeds, cinnamon and salt. Mix until well combined.

(2) In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the milk. Add to the dry ingredients and incorporate completely.

(3) Whisk the egg whites in another clean bowl, with an electric (or hand!) whisk, until they hold in soft peaks and are shiny. Fold gently in the other mixture until just combined.

(4) Melt a teaspoon of coconut oil into a pan, on medium heat, and start pouring some liquid into pancake shapes (around three at the same time). Cook for about 2 minutes on each sides, or until golden brown. Make them until you’ve got no batter left.

(5) Serve with fresh berries, maple syrup, bee pollen and almond butter, and parachute a few edible flowers on top.

Chia Pudding w/ a warm fruit salad

This recipe is the perfect example of something that starts as a complete trial and end up being one of the best creations of the year. I love baking my fruits, but usually do that separately, such as baked apples, pears, or in crumbles as well. Thus, baking a fruit salad – a mix of many scrumptious and juicy deliciousness – seemed to be a good idea! And it was! Baking the fruits actually enables them to release all their bursting flavours; and along with the nuts and maple, it takes you, your tastebuds and belly into a sweet and tangy daydream, dancing your way on a gentle serenade. And as usual, that weird looking but achingly good and beneficial vanilla chia pudding!

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Ingredients

Portions: 4 servings.

Preparation time: 25 minutes.

Cooking time: 15 minutes.

For the chia pudding:

  • 5 tbsp of chia seeds
  • 450ml of plantbased milk (almond, oats, spelt)
  • 1 tsp of vanilla powder

For the fruit salad:

  • 100g of red fruits, washed
  • 1 red apple, cored and cut in squares
  • 1 banana, peeled and sliced
  • 1 pear, cored and cut in squares
  • 1 kiwi fruits + 1 yellow kiwi fruit, peeled and sliced
  • 75g of grapes, cut in half
  • 75g of ground almonds
  • 50g of crushed almonds
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp of maple syrup
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon

Method

(1) The night before, mix the chia seeds, milk and vanilla together in a mixing bowl, cover with plastic paper and place in the fridge overnight.

(2) In the morning, slice all the fruits as indicated above. Preheat your oven to a 150°C.

(3) In a large mixing bowl, mix the fruits with the ground and crushed almonds, lemon juice, maple syrup and cinnamon.

(4) Place all the fruits on a large tray covered with parchment paper and bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until a nice smell comes out of the oven. You just want to warm them up and make them a little soft and gooey.

(5) Serve the chia pudding in jars, for people to cover their pudding with how much fruit salad they want. And if this is an “on-the-go” breakfast, place the chia pudding at the bottom and cover with a few spoonful of fruit salad.

Avocado on Toast

Holy Moly! This is not only my to go lunch, dinner and snack but has now become my to go brunch food! There is nothing easier to put together on this planet: take a piece of rye bread out, toast it, let the avocado and all your favourite toppings join the party – that’s it! And yet it is incredibly filling, full of flavours, creamy and spicy, as well as very good for you – full of essential fats and healthy carbohydrates, to keep you strong and energized through the whole morning or afternoon. And for my student readers, this is what you’d like your lunch to be as well – inexpensive, simple, healthy and delicious! Once tried, you’ll never be able to give it up, I promise!

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Ingredients

Portions: 4 servings.

Preparation time: 10 minutes.

  • 2 slices of rye bread or sunflower seeds bread, toasted
  • 1 avocado, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tsp of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp of chilli powder
  • 1 tsp of paprika (optional)
  • 1 – 2 tsp of dill (or thyme if you prefer)
  • Himalayan Salt & Black Pepper
  • A small handful of baby spinach, cut to garnish

Method

(1) Toast the slices of bread and then place them on nice plates. Thinly slice the avocado (or mash it if you’re in a hurry) and place it evenly on both slices.

(2) Top with some olive oil, balsamic vinegar, chilli powder, paprika, dill, salt and pepper. Garnish with a few spinach leaves and serve immediately.

Pear & Nut Toasts

This is the sweet version of the previous toasts. Just as simple and delicious, there’s a whole magic happening with the flavours here: the almond butter’s nutty and salty taste delightly merge with the sweetness of the pears and honey, and adding the crunchy pecans to this delicious equation makes it totally unforgettable. What you could do it dust the toasts with some cinnamon – it might work as fairy dust and gives you wings, who knows ?!

Ingredients

Portions: 4 servings.

Preparation time: 10 minutes.

  • 2 slices of rye bread or sunflower seeds bread, toasted
  • 2 tbsp of almond butter (or nut butter of choice)
  • 1 pear, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp of raw local honey
  • 1 tbsp of crushed pecans

Method

(1) Toast the slices of bread and then place them in nice plates. Cover with almond butter or nut butter of choice (even chocolate-hazelnut butter – heaven on earth!). Nicely arrange the slices of pear on top of each piece of bread.

(2) Cover with raw runny honey, parachute a few crushed pecans on top and serve!

Superfood Pink Smoothie

And here is the liquid happiness of our brunch – the so-called “pink smoothie”! What I love about this smoothie is that it’s full of superpower ingredients, ones you’ll love to include in your breakfast somehow, to help you kick that morning off! Flax seeds, as a plant-based source of omega – 3 fatty acids + ginger, full of gingerol, which has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects + acai powder, the highest antioxidant and energy boosting fruit on earth + turmeric, with its impressive anti-depressant, soothing and relaxing benefits. Drink it and your mind will be sharp yet calm, and your organism energized yet revitalised! What else in a morning smoothie my dears?

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Ingredients

Portions: 4 servings.

Preparation time: 10 minutes.

  • 2 bananas
  • 250g of frozen berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, etc.)
  • 200ml of plantbased milk (or coconut water if you prefer)
  • 1 ½ tbsp of flax seeds*
  • 4 cm of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 ½ tsp of acai powder
  • 1 ½ tsp of turmeric
  • 1 – 2 tsp of honey, to sweeten (optional)

*Try to prepare this smoothie at the very end before serving the brunch, so that the flax seeds do not have the time to thicken the smoothie too much.

Method

(1) Add all the ingredients to your blender or food processor and blend on a high speed until obtaining a smooth and glossy pink liquid. Drink directly. Enjoy!

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1 Comment

  1. Pingback: 8 Ingredients Pancakes For Those Who Want A Quick But Delicious Breakfast | The Glow Giver

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