Beetroot and Coconut Bircher

The beetroot season is in full swing and with our summer continuing I still prefer my oats to be cold.  This is a lovely rich bircher in both taste and colour.  The recipe makes enough for around 3 portions.  Do play around with the additions of nuts and extras, but the beetroot, coconut water and maple syrup with the oats are the core essentials of this dish.

beet-and-coconut-bircher

Beetroot & Coconut Bircher

  • 2ooml coconut water
  • 100g raw beetroot (about one medium beetroot)
  • 100g oats
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons shredded coconut
  • 50g Hazelnuts – slightly bashed
  • 50g sultanas
  • 2 tablespoons cacao nibs

Blend the beetroot and coconut water in a blender and put the mixture into a bowl.  Add the oats and maple syrup and mix in.  Add the other ingredients and leave in the fridge overnight.

 

Zoats

It’s taken me a while to try this, I was intrigued with the thought of adding courgette to porridge.  The term Zoats comes from the alternative name of Zucchini (I guess calling it Coats doesn’t really work)

I have no excuse for not trying it sooner, it’s not like I’ve been short of courgettes. Now I wish I hadn’t waited so long because it’s another great way to incorporate veg into breakfast.

Grating the courgettes is key, it means they nicely soften and blend with the oats without really adding any taste, to be honest I couldn’t taste that I had courgettes in my porridge, I could just see them!

I added pumpkin seeds and flaked almonds and sweetened the porridge with maple syrup but there are loads of different combinations to play with, I’m hooked.

Zoats

zoats

  • 40g Oats
  • 200ml Almond Milk
  • 100g grated courgette (skin on)
  • 1 tablespoon flaked almonds
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Put the oats, courgette and milk in a pan, bring to the boil and simmer for a 3 – 4 minutes (you may want to adjust the milk depending on how you like your porridge).

Stir through the seeds and almonds and then drizzle over the maple syrup.

Quick Pear Crunch

I’ve been staring at my bowl of pears all week and they are still as solid as a rock, despite being moved next to the bananas. So instead of prodding them in hopeful anticipation each morning, I decided this morning to take control and soften them by heat.

It was lovely, soft pear that still held it’s shape and was coated in lovely oaty bits.  So if you have some pears that are waiting to ripen, don’t wait – do this!

quick-pear-crunch-1

Quick Pear Crunch (serves one)

  • 1 unripe pear – cored and diced (keep the skin on)
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons of oats
  • 1 tablespoon of dried cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon of flaked almonds
  • 1 tablespoon of maple syrup

Method

  • Heat the oil in a small frying pan and then add the diced pear.  Cook gently for 3-4 minutes until the pear feels softer.
  • Add the oats and toss well to coat the pears.  Keep cooking and tossing for another 3 minutes or so, until the oats start to brown.
  • Add the cranberries and almonds and toss a couple of times. Then turn the heat off.
  • Add the maple syrup and toss everything together.
  • Leave it to cool.  I prefer mine quite cool, it gives the oats and syrup time to stick everything together a little bit. But I did nibble some bits whilst it was still hot and it was lovely.

Nice served with yoghurt and even a little more maple syrup if you’re feeling decadent.

quick-pear-crunch-2

Tropical Courgette Smoothie

I will admit it was with quiet desperation that I first added some courgette to a smoothie – my supply of this veg is fast outweighing my ability to eat them.  However I was surprised to find that it tasted ok, in fact the courgette added a little creaminess without too much taste (in a good way).

So after a few more experiments I think that this courgette smoothie is pretty good.

I’m still using my crop of yellow courgettes, but they taste the same as green so either goes.

courgette smoothie

Tropical Courgette Smoothie (serves one)

  • 150g fresh pineapple
  • 100g courgette (skin on)
  • 150ml coconut milk (from a carton not a tin)
  • A handful of mint leaves
  • 1 tablespoon of Tahini
  • 1 medjool date

Blend it all together.

 

Courgette Brekkie Loaf

So the courgette baking continued with this courgette loaf – I warn you, one slice just isn’t enough.  It’s a mix between a tea loaf, cake and sweet bread – which of course makes it perfect for brekkie.  Delicious fresh with butter or a drizzle of honey, or even just on it’s own.

I used yellow courgettes and definitely keep the skin on as it gives some lovely yellow flecks through the loaf (green is good too) – or you could go mad and use both yellow and green.

You can also freeze it – so a great way to continue using up those courgettes. It’s a good idea to slice it once cold before freezing it, so you can grab a slice at a time, although I have frozen a whole loaf as I have plans to eat it all during a family holiday in October!

This makes two loafs (1 litre loaf tins)

courgette bread 1

Courgette Brekkie Loaf

  • 2oog wholemeal plain flour
  • 200g white plain flour
  • 100g spelt flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarb of soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 300g golden caster sugar
  • A small grating of nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 50g desiccated coconut
  • 50g pecan nuts (broken up)
  • 50g walnuts (broken up)
  • 100g raisons
  • 250g melted butter
  • 100ml milk
  • 3 beaten eggs
  • 400g courgettes – grated with skin on

Method

Set oven to 180c/350f/Gas 4

Grease and line the loaf tins (two 1 litre tins)

  • Mix the flours, baking powder, bicarb, sugar, nutmeg, spice, salt, coconut, raisons and nuts together in a big bowl.
  • In a separate bowl – mix together the butter, milk and eggs.  Then mix this into the dry ingredients.
  • Add the grated courgettes and mix well.
  • Pour the mixture into the lined loaf tins.
  • Bake for 50-60 minutes.  The loaf should be a light golden brown and a skewer comes out clean.  Once cool enough to handle (how many times have you burnt yourself trying to remove cakes from tins!) – remove from the tins and cool on a wire rack.

You can of course eat this warm – but it slices better once cool, otherwise it may be a bit crumbly.

courgette bread 2