My 30 (or more!) days challenges

Breakfast – Day 53

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Today’s breakfast doesn’t look extremely beautiful in the picture, yet it’s one of the most delicious breakfasts ever! What it essentially is, is protein bowl cake with tart cherries in chocolate-banana sauce.

For the cake I grease a bowl with olive oil and mix in it 2 tablespoons yogurt, 3 tablespoons full-fat milk, 1 scoop vanilla-flavoured whey protein, 1 tablespoon coconut flour, 1 egg, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts, 1 tablespoon raisins and 1.5 squares chopped 99% cocoa Lindt Excellence chocolate. Then I microwave the bowl in 4 45-second increments, and in the meantime I make the sauce, simply by mixing 3 tablespoons milk with a banana and a tablespoon of cocoa powder in the blender.

Finally I serve the bowl cake with a dollop of heavy cream and mix some pitted sour cherries with the sauce to serve them on the side. Tastes heavenly!

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Breakfast – Day 52

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I know, I know, this is already my third breakfast post featuring English afternoon tea elements: scones, clotted cream and jam. But this time I’ve progressed even further – I made all of them myself from scratch!

I’ve already mentioned how to make the strawberry jam here – and I’m sticking to the same recipe, it always turns out good: fresh and a little bit tart, just as I like it.

The clotted cream takes the longest to make, so I’ll put it before the scones. In fact I had to start the day before yesterday! So what I basically did was take some high-fat cream (mine was 33% and pasteurised, although unpasteurised would have been preferable – but it’s too hard to find, so pasturised is ok too, just make sure it is not ultra-pasteurised), pour it in a shallow baking dish, making sure that the cream layer is between 1 and 3 inches high and put it into the oven at 80 degrees Celsius for the whole night (it usually takes 8-12 hours to clot, check for the lumpy yellow crust which has to form on top of the cream). Once it was ready, I took it out, careful not to break the yellow crust, cooled it down for 15 minutes and put it away in the fridge for another 8 hours – this is a must, as that’s when the clotting process finishes. And finally I just skimmed the thick layer of clotted cream from the surface, leaving some liquid buttermilk behind.

No need to throw away the buttermilk as it is to be used for the scones! It is now finally their turn, and I am making them right this morning, as they are best fresh and warm. So to make about 10 scones, I mix 250 g sieved plain flour with 45 g sugar and 12 g baking powder, then I rub in 75 g cold diced butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Next I add an egg, 70 ml buttermilk (or plain milk would do too) and 30 g sultanas and make soft sticky dough (I’m not working it too much, otherwise the scones would turn too dense and hard), which I then roll flat until it’s one inch thick and cut out circles using a standard water glass, as I don’t have a cutter (the key here is not to twist the glass or the cutter, but rather just press it). And finally I put my scones on a baking tray lined with baking parchment, brush them on the top with a mixture of egg beaten with a tablespoon of milk (make sure it’s only the top and not the sides, otherwise the egg mixture would prevent the scones from rising) and bake them in the preheated oven at 220 degrees Celsius for 12-14 minutes.

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Breakfast – Day 39

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I know I have posted scones with cream and jam already on Day 32. But today I’ve made a small modification to this breakfast.

Obviously, neither scones nor cream are very healthy to start with. But adding highly-processed sugar-packed jam from the supermarket makes the whole thing even less so. So I thought, why not make the jam myself, given that there are plenty of sweet fragrant fresh strawberries everywhere this time of the year! The jam is very easy to make, I just mix a cup of strawberries with one teaspoon honey in a microwaveable bowl and microwave the mixture for about 20 minutes, taking it out every 1.5-2 minutes to stir. It turns out delicious and not very sweet, just as I like!

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Smoothies – Day 12 – Spicy Creamy Shake

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I would call this one a shake rather than a smoothie, as it doesn’t really have any solid ingredients, only liquids and powders. I’ve had it after a workout and it feels great!

Here is what goes in the blender:

  • Half cup almond milk
  • Half cup black coffee (americano)
  • One scoop protein powder with chocolate flavour
  • Two teaspoons Bioglan Superfoods Supergreens Cacao Boost powder
  • One tablespoon flaxseed
  • Half teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon matcha powder
  • A pinch of cinnamon
  • A pinch of clove
  • A pinch of ginger
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • Half tablespoon clotted Cornish cream (the unhealthy bit 🙂 )

Spicy Creamy Shake

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Breakfast – Day 32

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I still have to consume my pot of clotted cream, and the most traditional English way of doing so is having cream tea, or basically tea and scones with cream and berry jam. All normal people do it in the afternoon, but I am going to have my scones for breakfast.

I am not going to lie saying that I’m baking the scones myself – I am not, just got some all butter sultana scones at the supermarket.

Apparently, in Cornwall the jam is spread on the scone first, with a dollop of clotted cream on top of it. In Devon it is done the other way round. I am trying both ways, and I can’t tell which one I like better, both are great! And of course, I am taking my tea with milk!

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Breakfast – Day 31

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The 30 days of my breakfast challenge are already over, but I’m willing to continue, because I’ve got more ideas.

Today I am making an Azerbaijani village-style breakfast. Apparently, it’s a fascinating one, especially in the open air, with freshly baked bread and fresh home made dairy products. Not being a massive dairy fan, I never really appreciated it though. But now, while everyone in the world seems to be going dairy-free, I, on the other hand, am starting to reconcile with these products. That is why I’m making this today – with UK supermarket products obviously!

Pitta bread is not exactly similar to the Azeri tandir chorayi, but that’s the closest substitute I could find. Local butter, crème fraîche and honey are quite fit for the purpose, and, luckily enough, the traditional British clotted cream (also called Devon cream or Cornish cream) very closely resembles the Azeri qaymaq. Cheese-wise, I’m using Greek feta, it’s pretty ok as a substitute. And finally, there’s a glass of sweetened tea with lemon (I absolutely hate sugar in my tea, but for the sake of authenticity will have it this way!)

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