Earl Grey Oats Variation

Oatmeal.

IMG_1088Definitely a favourite food. It’s fast and easy to prepare, requires only one pot and is more or less fool-proof (just always keep an eye on the boiling milk!)

IMG_1091Nut Butter. Also a favourite. No wonder I always pair the two.

IMG_1090Cashew nut butter. The absolute favourite of them all. I’ve written about adding it into my oatmeal more than enough times to prove that it is a delicious combination.

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To keep things interesting, I subbed millet flakes for the rolled oats. If I dare say so myself, I believe the Earl Grey Tea + Cashew Nut Butter combo is even more scrumptious this way. 🙂

You can find the recipe here, just swap millet flakes for the oats.

With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

 

 

 

High Protein Flight and stressful College Life

After my eventful weekend in Zürich, it was time for me to return to New York. To make sure I continued in my regained healthy ways back at college, I decided to have an ultra high protein day and packed things like tofu, egg white omelette, Quest Bars and Greek yoghurt for the trip.

Breakfast was quark with Apricot jam, no sugar added

IMG_0245IMG_0594At the airport I stopped to purchase some chocolates for my friends, and came across a massive tub of Nutella

IMG_0813I also bought myself some Rivella while waiting for my flight. Rivella is a very Swiss drink, and I really missed it in the States

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IMG_0814My plan to eat well worked out more or less, but I found myself constantly snacking on the foods I took along, and not really waiting for hunger to kick in, which then resulted in me having no more food relatively soon into the 8 hour flight…

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Tofu

 
IMG_0778Chocolate was the only thing I had left available…

Once back in New York, my college life recommenced. Stress built, healthy eating decreased… I did however manage to keep up with my workout schedule!

IMG_0824I also started to eat oatmeal nearly every day for breakfast!

IMG_0839PB and J oatmeal

IMG_0830Pumpkin Spice oatmeal made with Coconut Milk

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IMG_0856Creamy Earl Grey Oatmeal with Cashew Nut Butter

IMG_0821More Earl Grey Oats (it’s my favourite! I just adore Cashew Nut Butter, plus I was trying to finish everything off before leaving on Monday!)

IMG_0655Chocolate Brownie Oatmeal made with almond butter

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More Earl Grey OatsPhoto on 23-11-13 at 09.59And a massive smoothie bowl 🙂

To balance out the stress, I’ve been going out with my friends a lot so that we don’t go mad on this campus

IMG_0443I went to a basketball game

IMG_0441Made Vegan Edible Cookie Dough as seen at Chocolate Covered Katie

IMG_0615Went out and ordered in Sushi

IMG_0700Found amazing Ben and Jerry’s Flavours (didn’t buy any of these though…)

Got into a few snowball fights because it has snowed here

IMG_0835IMG_0844IMG_0825Went to see the Nutcracker

IMG_0823Got freaked out over Christmas chocolate

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IMG_0826Went out for Pizza

IMG_0895and Froyo

IMG_0874Worked on a performance

IMG_0875Read a few fortunes

IMG_0871Got my nails done

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Went to Sephora for Xmas shopping

IMG_0889(became a VIB ROUGE MEMBER!)

IMG_0886Found some new amazing products that I need to purchase in the future

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IMG_0883(love the Concealer Names!)

IMG_0885Xmas decorations

IMG_0884Hotel Empire in the distance 😉

IMG_0869A few trips to Whole Foods

IMG_0848And continued to work on my Chocolate Calendar

While constantly missing these two

IMG_0802Wow these last two weeks have really flown by, my semester and New York experience is coming to a close, and will be returning to Zurich on Monday! Time flies…

IMG_0699Especially when you spend your time snap chatting 😉

IMG_0435and eating madeleines that your teacher brings you

IMG_0418Or obsessing over products you want/need/can’t have

IMG_0614Or just eating too much peanut butter

994633_10151990951215731_1948602882_n..and other things

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IMG_0702Time flies way too fast…

With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Fail and Earl Grey Oats Win

A few months ago I shared with you some of my favourite overnight oats recipes. My two most loved ones were Peanut Butter Oats and Earl Grey Oats. I tried recreating them here with steel-cut oats, but failed miserably as the soaking period is longer than for quick oats and I ended up needing to chew much more than was enjoyable. Not letting my disappointment get to me, I decided to get up early instead and cook up some oatmeal in the morning.

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My first breakfast oatmeal attempt were my Fudge Oats, and I fell in love with the fluffy yet creaminess that the steel-cut oats attained. That being said, you can imagine how excited I was for my next steel-cut-oat experience!

IMG_0635In the form of Peanut Butter Oats.

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IMG_0651The texture was good, but I should not have added PB 2 to the mix at the end, as it gave off a weird artificial aftertaste.

IMG_0649The texture and creaminess were great though, so I decided to eat half before dance and doctor the rest up later before going to the gym.

This “doctoring up” came in the form of almond butter with chia seeds, cocoa powder and more chocolate chips.

IMG_0652The result: brownie batter oats without the nasty after taste! Absolute win.

IMG_0655It became very sticky due to the added almond butter and also super chocolatey with the cocoa. Needless to say, I enjoyed every last bite and did not crave any unhealthy cookies or cake afterwards!

IMG_0667My next attempt at a stove-top version of my overnight oats was more successful than the PB2 drama as I stayed as close to my original recipe as possible, with only the slightest tweak: a tablespoon of honey drizzled on top.

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IMG_0768These earl grey oats were perfect. I was surprised that steeping the tea bag in the boiling coconut milk actually worked! It was scrumptiously delicious!

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With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fudge Oatmeal

Steel-cut oats, oh why don’t you soften overnight?! Probably because it’s winter and they are telling me to eat them in a massive, hot, steaming bowl before dance instead!

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This is exactly what happened with this bowl when my plans went rogue. I wanted to eat my oats during my Dance History class after Contemporary and before the gym, but my tummy was expecting a proper breakfast that morning instead.

So, I cast my conference book on the Cockney school aside and ran to the kitchen to heat up the oats I had prepared a few nights earlier. I also decided to go a little crazy and add some banana, which reminded me of the Oatmeal Artist and how she uses banana in chocolate flavoured oatmeal to add fudge-like flavour; and voilà, an oatmeal star is born!

IMG_0430I was extremely pleased with the flavour and dreamy creaminess. Steel-cut oats are definitely more fun to use than regular rolled oats!

Pre-dance Fudge Oatmeal

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup steel-cut oats
  • up to 1 cup of chocolate almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons of Decadent Blend: Chia and Flaxseed with cocoa and coconut
  • 1/3 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 banana

Directions:

  1. Place milk in a pot and bring to a simmer
  2. add in oats
  3. add in the rest of the ingredients
  4. stir and cook until banana has melted into the oats
  5. serve and enjoy!

 

 

Pomegranate and Dark Chocolate Overnight Oats

Guess who is back on a clean eating spree..

IMG_0360Yup. I have officially eaten one too many sweet potato fries, just enough chocolate chip cookies, and a bit too much Greek yoghurt. I have officially decided to go back to basics.

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The idea came to me while reading the Oatmeal Artist’s blog as part of my morning blog-reading routine and I came across her Pomegranate Müesli. The first thing I thought of was, my Iranian side would love the pomegranate part of that! My second thought was, my crazy health food obsessed self would actually eat that. And my third thought was: I should make this before a hectic day at college!

That was a few weeks ago…

IMG_0357I ended up finally pursuing my creativity in oatmeal making when I decided to cut all the crap out of my life; no more processed anything, no negativity, and no more sweet potato fries! So when I took a trip to the store and found pomegranate arils, ready to eat, I knew the time had come…

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IMG_0362Pomegranate + Dark chocolate chips… heaven!

IMG_0357I enjoyed my Müsli at the place we call the “pub” before contemporary on Wednesday. It was a good day…

Pomegranate and Chocolate Overnight Oats

(Inspired by the Oatmeal Artist and my bad food habits..)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon chia seed and flax-seed, ground
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup chocolate almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter (I used cookie dough flavour!!! will tell you more later ;))
  • pomegranate arils
  • bittersweet chocolate chips
  1. Mix the oats, ground flax seeds, cocoa, milk and peanut butter
  2. shake until blended well
  3. store overnight
  4. before eating add pomegranate and chocolate
  5. Enjoy!

With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

..of oats and ‘fondu’: Earl Grey Oats

Thursday dance class meant one amazing thing: more overnight oats! 🙂

Yumm!

Yumm!

As I mentioned in my last recipe post, I am a big fan of Lauren’s blog . She has so many great ideas, and I have yet to try them all! When I first discovered this small jewel of a website, I focused on testing her stove top oatmeal, as they are a more spontaneous breakfast option (you make them if you want them, no planning necessary..)
I’ve always liked all things oatmeal; the porridge kind with maple syrup, manuka honey or cinnamon sugar were always a number one pick, same goes for oatmeal raisin – or oatmeal peanut butter – cookies. But making porridge always required a 15 minute time investment, which during the week, I really didn’t have. I took to buying food bars with oats in them (absolute favorite being Clif Bars, but being me, I only like certain foods for limited time periods (probably because I eat my new-found food affairs every day for like a month..), and soon got sick of even the tastiest snacks…

Spoonful of delish

Spoonful of delish

My oatmeal prep-time issue did change however, when about a year ago I had my final high school exams. Each written test was 4 hours long, and after taking only some fruit, nuts and a food bar with me for the first one, I knew I needed something with a little more oompf to keep me going; thus, enter the oatmeal. I would get up extra early, pumped only by an extra dose of adrenaline (I was super nervous..) and have enough time to prepare cashew and blueberry oatmeal to take with me. I would then devour it during my test by the spoonful and wash it down with a tumbler of earl grey tea.
But alas, as soon as the exams were over, so ended my oatmeal breakfast habit and stayed buried as a memory…

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Until now..:)

With my work and dance schedule, I need proper food to keep me going. Since oatmeal has never let me down in the past, I rely on it now again to give me sustenance for the day. But since I’m in a work scenario, rather than an exam one, I don’t wake up as easily in the morning.. So how can I make sure I can still eat the wholesome meal I want, and sleep until the latest possible moment? I found my answer thanks to none other than my (Swiss!) boyfriend, of all people: Birchermüesli, more internationally known as overnight oats.

The Swiss invention of Birchermüesli was originally made for patients in hospital, as part of their therapy. The physician, Maximilian Bircher-Benner, created this dish in order in incorporate more fruit in to their diet. Based on something he ate while exploring the Swiss Alps, the original muesli – unlike today’s – consisted mainly of shredded apples; oats, hazelnuts, lemon juice and condensed milk merely complemented the dish. Since then, endless variations have popped up all over the world, but the base remained unchanged: fruit, oats and milk (or yoghurt).

Overnight prep

Overnight prep

By preparing this the night before, it ensured a tasty snack/breakfast for whenever I wanted it; totally stress-free! And, as mentioned in my last post, it really works wonders before exercise!

Now, let’s move on the actual recipe…

Before launching a google search for overnight oat-recipes, I checked out the Oatmeal Artists options. Her creative ideas have been an inspiration for most of my own oatmeal, and this time was no different. One recipe that really jumped out at me was the tea-steeped oatmeal. This is something I had never heard of before..

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The basic recipe was as simple as could be, so the only thing I had to really think about was what tea I wanted to use. Also, in my ongoing quest to up the protein content of everything, I wanted to find a nut butter that would match (I really enjoy the addition of nut butter to my oatmeal, reaping not only amazing flavor but also many nutritional benefits, and after testing a delicious recipe from Peanut Butter Fingers, I knew it could easily be added to overnight oats as well.) But what tea…?

A couple of weeks ago, I found a delicious shortbread cookie. An earl grey and blueberry shortbread cookie to be exact. This buttery cookie gave me new perspectives: earl grey tea and blueberries…match perfectly?! So creative, it works! I was amazed. Even more so, when I remembered my days during my finals, eating oatmeal with blueberries and drinking earl grey tea! It was fate! This exact memory triggered a déjà vu, where I then recalled, that those oats tasted so good, not just by adding blueberries and drinking tea, but also thanks to the creamy, almost buttery flavor of cashew nut butter!
Proud of my accomplishment, I went to the kitchen…

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Earl Grey Oats (serves 1)
(inspired by the oatmeal artist, PBfingers and shortbread cookies)

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup regular oats
  • Earl grey tea bag in 1/4 cup of water (steep for min 1 hour, I used 2 bags)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon cashew nut butter
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract and/or powder
  • 1 tablespoon Quark or Greek yoghurt
  • 1/3 cup Vanilla soy milk (increases creaminess)
  • Brown sugar or maple syrup (to taste..I recently made it without any additional sweeteners, and found it needed something)

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients, and a splash of milk, in a mason jar or Tupperware
  2. Stir well until combined
  3. Add in rest of milk
  4. Cover with lid and shake well
  5. Store in the fridge overnight (or for several hours)
  6. Enjoy!

Let me know if you can think of any other great combinations!

With attitude and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

..of oats and ‘fondu’: Creamy Cookie Dough Oats

Who doesn’t love cookies? And I’m not talking about a love for eating them – although eating them (specifically the moist, chewy, melt-in-your-mouth kind) is great and all…
But we all know where the actual passion and joy really lies, when we talk about cookies. Just in case you aren’t familiar with and can’t think of enjoying anything more than an actual cookie, then let me share with you, the love… of eating raw cookie dough!

Yummyness on the go

Yummyness on the go

It starts as a small enjoyment during our childhood, receiving a spoon to lick when someone bakes the occasional batch of cookies. This later develops into licking the bowl clean (in addition to eating a spoonful), which gradually evolves to eating half the batch and feeling woozy as a teenager (where’s the self-control; …not in my vocab!). Finally this occasional pleasure graduates in to what we now recognize as a comfort food, making a batch to pig out on to indulge in (not bake!), whenever we, or any of our friends, are suffering from a broken heart, having a terrible day, or just need some sort of cheering up. In most cases, only cookie dough can help heal the pain, as the affiliation with the happy times we’ve had – eating raw dough growing up – brings comfort (I have however heard that ice cream and/or wine might have similar healing powers…maybe a combo of all three will turn us into super women?!)

Enjoy by the spoonful!

Enjoy by the spoonful!

But eating raw cookie dough can have it’s consequences. While being delicious, raw cookie dough (unless it’s vegan) will also mean that it contains raw eggs, i.e. there is an increased chance of salmonella infection. Also, in it’s raw, scrumptious form, it’s very hard to practice portion control, resulting in eating too much sugar and fat (butter), all in one go. (Which is fine when you’re in your teens and have an amazing metabolism, but after a certain age you’ll start growing sideways…).

So how do we solve this predicament? We clearly can’t just go cold turkey!

Well, I can think of two ways around this. The first is making one of these guilt-free cookie dough recipes, created specifically for eating purposes: Cookie dough , Cookie Dough.

The other option is to make an oatmeal-based cookie-dough-like breakfast or snack (see my recipe below) to enjoy as a healthy, balanced meal.

Mhhhhhhm :)

Mhhhhhhm 🙂

I first came across cookie dough oatmeal on both Lauren‘s and Julie‘s blogs, and after making their cookie-porridge recipes for breakfast, and never knowing what to eat before dance, I wanted to see if it could also double as a sustainable snack. I decided the overnight oats option might be more practical to transport, and ate the oats on my way to the studio nearly every day last week. It was a success! Their recipes offer a perfect combo of energy, protein and carbs, to help me excel and perform, without feeling weak, tired or hungry once during my two-hour sessions! I felt like I was on top of the world 🙂

So this recipe is inspired by their awesome ideas, and tweaked a tiny bit to boost protein content and increase creamyness…

Oat heaven!

Oat heaven!

Creamy Cookie Dough Overnight Oats (serves 1)

(inspired by the Oatmeal Artist, Peanut Butter Fingers and the Cooking Actress)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup regular rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter (you can use any other kind of nut butter, just remember this will change the flavour), I used two different kinds of almond butter, one was made with white almonds and the other with plain (the white one is sweeter and thicker!)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds (do not omit, these magical seeds help thicken the oatmeal)
  • up to 1 tablespoon of plain quark or Greek yoghurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon molasses (I used black-strap)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla powder (optional)
  • cinnamon to taste
  • 1/2 cup milk of choice (I use vanilla soy milk)
  • 1 teaspoon carob chips (or chocolate chips, or bits of nuts,or…) (optional)

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients, except for a tiny bit of the milk (need for easy stirring) and the add-ins, in a mason jar or Tupperware
  2. Stir well until combined
  3. Add in rest of milk
  4. Cover with lid and shake well
  5. Store in the fridge overnight (or for several hours)
  6. Enjoy!

Note: This recipe makes a very dense, filling oatmeal..also, I think I added a bit more than a tablespoon of almond butter, and found it tasted a bit too much like marzipan (so relatively sweet!)

Kept me going..

Kept me going..

Overnight oats are my current recommendation for a pre-dance snack(or even just before any cardiovascular activity), as it has just the right ratio of carbs to protein to fat to keep my blood sugar levels steady, energy levels high and my hunger at bay…!

With an extra “oompf” of attitude (thank you oats 😉 ) and nail polish, Anoushé xoxo

Question of the day:

What is the comfort food, you know you can always rely on, to cheer you up? Are you also a raw cookie dough eater?

I have to admit, I love Swiss cookie dough. Whenever Christmas is around the corner, we bake a ton of cookies, and eat plenty of dough. My favorite is probably Mailänderli – best described as lemony, buttery, sweet heaven (and I honestly prefer the dough to the actual cookie!) As to comfort food, I don’t generally eat to cheer myself up, (I dance instead 🙂 ), but have always loved Macaroni and Cheese (homemade), Peanut butter curry with tofu and spinach over brown rice (yes, I find this very comforting), and, of course, the occasional cookie dough…:)

THE COOKIE (DOUGH) MONSTER! Enjoying vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Oatmeal Cookie-Dough!

THE COOKIE (DOUGH) MONSTER! Enjoying vegan Peanut Butter and Chocolate Oatmeal Cookie-Dough! 🙂