Read this: Volume 1

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My favorite blog posts are generally the ones that come once a week with links to insightful articles/tasty food/pretty things WHATEVER. And since I work in communications, collating news or links was my job once upon a time. Since I apparently miss it so much here is my contribution to what you’re reading today!

Breakfast: The International New York Times – I get a free copy at work every morning. Best way to start the day!

The reason my diet will start next week: 50 Things to Eat (in Singapore) Before You Die – Bak kwa mac and cheese anyone?

Following this news all week – NSA phone tapping – today’s story is: Obama May Ban Spying on Heads of Allied States

Looking forward to: TEARING into my new bag of Throwback coffee from Papa Palheta
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Not surprised that: Men Look More At Your Body Than Your Face – you mean they don’t like me for my WINNING PERSONALITY???

Smartypants at Oxford tell us: Now, a Kiss Isn’t Just a Kiss

Blog Discovery – Food: Brown Eyed Baker and the Katharine Hepburn Brownies (a classic I must know) that led me to discover her wonderfulness. My pants will not thank me.

Blog (re)Discovery – Fashion: Extra Petite helps the vertically challenged girl dress all purty. I actually found her blog ages ago but found her style too adult, but that seems to have changed! Look, look, LOOK – so pretty!

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Pumpkin Banana Bread

I’ve been eating this all day, err day.

pumpkin bread

Actually I’ve been eating this for breakfast. Occasionally.

BUT! It’s really quite good and the texture is fantastic. This bread came to be because I bought a tin of canned pumpkin and a jar of pumpkin spice. I made a pumpkin latte and then stared at both ingredients and realized I had made a fatal error in judgment and was not going to be able to finish either. Ever.

I also realized I had greek yogurt in the fridge because I had been on a smoothie making frenzy over the weekend and decided I needed to use that up. And all the bananas I froze for the smoothie making frenzy. I found this bread online and voila!

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp pumpkin spice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree
2 bananas
2 eggs
1/2 cup greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 175 degrees celcius.

Mix the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and pumpkin spice in a bowl.

Whisk the brown sugar, pumpkin puree, bananas, eggs, yogurt and vanilla extract in another large bowl. Mash the bananas separately, first.

Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

Pour the mixture into a greased 9×5 inch loaf pan. Bake for 55 minutes.

Toothpick/knife will have a bit of gunk on it but its fine.

*This bread isn’t very sweet so I like to spoon a tsp of maple syrup on it and let it soak in before eating.
**Adapted from Closet Cooking.

Garam Masala Hummus

So this weekend I discovered a bag of chickpeas in my food cupboard and I was like yeahhhh. So I soaked it for eight hours, boiled it for 2 and then had an ENTIRE pot of chickpeas that I didn’t know what to do with. So I made hummus.

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2 cans of chickpeas (Approximately. I’m possibly lying.)
Juice of 3 lemons
4 minced garlic cloves
1/3 cup tahini
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup olive oil ( I have no idea how much I actually used because I kept adding when the mixture wouldn’t mix)
1 tsp homemade garam masala (from my MOM)

Blend chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini and salt in a food processor until it gets as smooth as possible.

Add olive oil and garam masala and blend it till its smoother.

Serve with cut up veggies, pita bread or on a spoon. Or an egg. Because that’s what I had for lunch on Tuesday. And it was GOOD.

*I adapted this from The Minimalist Baker. Great blog.

Coconut Chocolate Chip Granola

Too close?
Too close?
Still too close?
Still too close?
We all good now?
We all good now?

I wanted granola and this is what I had leftover in my fridge/pantry/life. BOOM! Awesomeness in a bowl.

2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 Tbsps cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
1 pinch ground cinnamon (I think this helps bring out the taste of the chocolate)
3 Tbsps + 1 tsp coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup dessicated/flaked coconut
2/3 cup chocolate chips (I use Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chips and it makes ALL the difference)

Preheat oven to 175 degrees celcius. Line a baking sheet with foil (other people say parchment paper, I don’t have any).

In a bowl mix the dry ingredients (oats, cocoa powder, salt and cinnamon).

In another bowl mix and then whisk the wet/binding ingredients (coconut oil, maple syrup, light brown sugar, vanilla extract).

Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir to combine. I usually use a spoon and then my hands.

Pour the mixture onto the baking sheet. Spread it out evenly.

Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and flip and add the coconut. Bake for another 10 minutes. It should smell like it’s done. I know these instructions are subjective.

Remove from the oven and when still hot pour chocolate chips over. Carefully mix with a spoon so that the chocolate chips melt a bit.

Wait until its completely cool before storing in a container. Should keep fresh for a week.

*I owe my granola making prowess entirely to Shutterbean and base my granola recipe on her Nutty Cranberry Granola. However I did adjust baking times and I find that you really just have to watch the granola and figure out what temperature and time works for your oven.

Overnight Oats (2)

My breakfast this morning (actually this was my breakfast on Wednesday but this is a LIE all food bloggers tell) was this – Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Overnight Oats. And it was TERRIBLE.

overnight oats

This is mainly because I, like an idiot, decided I didn’t need to use a sweetener because HEY the chocolate chips would be enough. They weren’t. But I did use chia seeds and they were pretty kickass and REALLY filling and apparently the INTERNET says its good for me? Ok!

1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup soy milk
1 Tbsp chia seeds (I used these chia seeds and bought it from iHerb – use my promo code at checkout if you’re a first time customer)
1-2 tsps honey/maple syrup (please use a sweetener – otherwise you WILL be sad)
dash of vanilla extract
2 Tbsps chocolate chips
1 Tbsp peanut butter

Mix oats, milk, chia seeds, honey/maple syrup and vanilla extract the night before. Put in a container (small plastic Tupperware should work) in the fridge.

The next morning, stir and top with chocolate chips and peanut butter.

Eat.

* Chia seeds have protein and are awesome and apparently will make you a successful human being.
** My overnight oats are quite liquidy. You can play around with the consistency if you want it less liquidy. I understand that this is obvious advice. But logic may not be your strong point.

I make ugly food & it TASTES SO GOOD

The food I make is partly inspired by my Mom’s cooking, partly inspired by the contents of my refrigerator and sometimes inspired by THE INTERNET. Here’s a rundown of some dishes I’ve cooked from recipes found on some of my favorite food blogs and websites. I’ve also included the pictures and links to the originals JUST so you can see how desperately I need a new camera. Mine are first. Obviously.

Nutty Cranberry GranolaShutterbean

granola

This actually turned out really well except that the oats got a bit too overdone. But honestly, they taste kickass with any kind of milk and are super filling and good for breakfast.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Pancakes (Vegan)Top With Cinnamon

pancakes Chocolate-Chip-Cookie-Pancakes-049-18

This recipe make super heavy pancakes but they’re quite good and you feel weirdly healthy when you eat them. What the recipe doesn’t tell you is that it sticks to the pan like crazy if you use normal vegetable oil. So you know that’s cool if you don’t mind destroyed pancakes. Or you could use coconut oil which is recommended.

Pineapple Upside Down CakeNigella

pineapple cake

This cake is a classic. It is easy and always turns out good. Mine looks a little different because I don’t do maraschino cherries and it also tasted different because I used pineapple slices in syrup. Don’t do it. Get pineapple juice and use that instead.

Green Chili ChickenSingapore Shiok

green chilli chicken

Okay this was ugly and it didn’t taste so good. Was it something I did? Personally I think it wasn’t a very good recipe.

The Reset Button SaladShutterbean

salad

I HAD to make this salad when I saw it. Unfortunately my version didn’t have spring onions because Fairprice decided to run out. Wow the contrast of how bad my salad looks next to the original is shocking. But it tasted awesome!

So get cooking this weekend and make some ugly, tasty food!