Hazelnut Cherry Granola

hazelnut-cherry-granola-birdseye

While no one loves being woken up before 5am by a hungry baby, there is something special about watching the sunrise. Still half asleep yesterday morning I sat up in bed, son in my arms, staring out of the window as the sky slowly paled from ink to clear blue, and pink cloud-studded streaks blossomed on the horizon. By the time I lay back down again the sun was the palest yellow, a soft egg yolk hanging low in the sky.

Yesterday was the first day in Brisbane that really felt like autumn had come to play. The evening was breezy and the air fresh rather than heavy with heat. After dinner it was cool enough for a cuppa before bed, and during the night we dragged the doona over ourselves. This morning as I pottered around the kitchen barefoot making tea, I found myself shivering for the briefest of moments. After months and months of crazy humidity and high heat, autumn is most welcome. Continue reading “Hazelnut Cherry Granola”

Bircher Muesli

bircher-muesli-figs

Breakfast has always been one of my favourite meals of the day. I’ve never been able to skip it. I love taking my time over breakfast – eating, reading, chatting. I also heartily approve of second breakfasts. In fact, one of the best things about weekends is second breakfast. Followed by brunch, then lunch. And then you can start planning dinner. But I digress…

I tend to get into breakfast grooves. As a uni student living in Carlton, most every day for about two years I would have a big bowl of muesli for brekky while reading my school texts, followed by a percolated coffee and a cigarette sitting on the green bench in our freezing cold courtyard. When S and I were first hanging out, getting to know one another, whenever he would stay over breakfast would be down at the uni cafe – almond croissant for him, orange poppyseed muffin for me, long blacks and hand-rolled cigarettes for both of us. Continue reading “Bircher Muesli”

Cashew & Cacao Bean Smoothie

cashew-cacao-bean-smoothie-spoon

During our recent Balinese sojourn we stayed in Penestanan, an area just on the outskirts of Ubud. Our house wasn’t accessible by car – to reach the area from the main road below we had to climb a long flight flight of stairs shadowed by tropical plants. Once up the top everything was interconnected by concrete walkways that were bordered on one side by a shallow flowing stream, and on the other side by houses, or greenery, or long drops into fern-studded ravines. The area also had its own little assortment of shops, cafes, and fruit stalls.

On our first day in Bali, after the long lines at customs and the drive from the airport, we arrived in Ubud just before nightfall. W was tired and S and I were fucking starving. Only a few minutes walk from our place, we discovered the Yellow Flower Cafe, having its weekly Balinese buffet. The food was all kinds of delicious – laden with tempeh, peanuts, green beans, toasted coconut. Continue reading “Cashew & Cacao Bean Smoothie”

Coconut Cacao Granola

 

coconut-cacao-granola-milk

When I was growing up all I ever wanted was coco pops for breakfast. They looked so enticing and candy-like, turning the milk chocolate brown. Of course at home it was all healthy cereals and grain toast for us. And here’s the thing, the first time I did have coco pops – at a friends place the morning after a sleep over – it was such a disappointment. They were totally bland.

This granola, on the other hand, is totally not bland. It is, in fact, totally delicious. It is no secret that breakfast is one of my favourite meals of the day – all types of porridge in the winter, and various styles of muesli in the summer. This granola is perfect for the in-between seasons, for autumn and for spring. It is kind of like a treat (and it does indeed turn the milk chocolate brown), but also perfectly healthy and reasonable to have for breakfast. Continue reading “Coconut Cacao Granola”

Green Coconut & Pineapple Smoothie

green-smoothie-pineapple

A few weeks ago S planted spinach, parsley and coriander seeds. They started sprouting just before we went down for a flying visit to Victoria, and by the time we got back were coming along quite nicely. This past week we’ve been enjoying the baby spinach – the first of our spring crops for this year, there is nothing like the feeling of going out the back to pick a vegetable fresh from the dirt and be eating it less than twenty minutes later.

Maybe it is my imagination, but I feel like our homegrown spinach is just, well, better than the stuff we buy from the market. The leaves are almost plump, juicy and full of flavour. Mostly I have it chopped up in a lunchtime salad, but a green smoothie is easily the best way to showcase fresh leafy produce. Continue reading “Green Coconut & Pineapple Smoothie”

Blueberry Buckwheat Porridge

blueberry-buckwheat-porridge

On Thursday S suggested that we go camping on the weekend. And so we did. We chose Springbrook National Park, mostly as it is close by and we were only going away for the one night. After a quick market run to stock up on supplies, we packed the car and drove up early Saturday morning. W snoozed in the back for much of the drive and we arrived at the park in time for lunch.

Once we turned off the main highway, the bush around us was all tall trees disappearing into the sky, pale green leaves dry and dusty, trunks blackened by an old bush fire that ripped through the region some fifteen years back. After we set up camp we took a stroll through the bush, along the ridge line looking down at the waterfall, clouds skimming across the sky drawing us in and out of the sunshine. Continue reading “Blueberry Buckwheat Porridge”

Toasted Oat Porridge with Boozy Poached Pears

toasted-oat-porridge-bowl

Many years ago I spent about 12 months living in a big old share house on top of the hill in Brunswick. It had a bright red front door and a hallway full of bikes in various states of use and repair. It was right next to car wash in which we held some pretty epic parties, and it had a lovely green garden that caught the morning light.

It was a great place to live – I made good friends there, and wrote most of my thesis there as well. The one downside was that it was freezing fucking cold during the long Melbourne winters. My room was out the back and had this great big window overlooking the backyard. Beautiful in summer letting in all the light, but so cold in winter letting in the air gusts between the cracks. I used to hunker down in bed, dreading the midnight toilet run. Continue reading “Toasted Oat Porridge with Boozy Poached Pears”