RECIPE | Porridge With Banana And Desiccated Coconut

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I've recently been educating myself more on food and the things we should and should't be putting into our bodies. It's a subject I find really fascinating and I discovered I wasn't nearly as healthy as I thought I was.

Porridge is such a great thing to start your day with! It contains fiber (great for maintaining good cholesterol and blood sugar levels), complex carbohydrates (giving you lasting energy), iron (which helps oxygen get around your body), phosphorus (good for filtering waste out of your body), calcium (which strengthens teeth and bones) and vitamin A (an antioxidant which kills free radicals, and aids cell growth). OK, I'm sold!

I've been on a quest to 'dress up' my porridge bowls and boost the meals nutritional value. Well, breakfast doesn't need to be complicated, or boring for that matter, so keeping the toppings simple is a must for me. Here's one of my new favourites (and honestly, two weeks ago you'd never have heard me say anything with banana in it was a favourite of mine)!


INGREDIENTS:
(serves 1)

1/2 cup organic porridge oats
1/2 cup milk (I use almond milk)
1/2 cup filtered water
1/2 tsp honey (optional. I use manuka)
1 or 2 tbsp desiccated coconut
1 banana, sliced


DIRECTIONS:

Heat the porridge oats in a small saucepan with the milk. Add water (Orlaith likes it all, I like half). If you like things a bit sweet you can stir in some honey while it's heating. Stir the porridge regularly for about 7 minutes until you've reached your desired consistency. Put the porridge in a serving bowl and finally add the sliced banana and sprinkle over the desiccated coconut.

Enjoy x

QUICK TIPS:

If you're a hungry badger like me or you'e cooking for more than one person you can double, triple, even quadruple this recipe as required and adjust measurements to taste.

Porridge oats are meant to be gluten free, however due to farming and manufacturing practices they commonly gets cross contaminated making it inedible for people with coeliac disease and gluten intolerances. There is a brand of oats made by a coeliac which claims to be 100% gluten free. The brand is called Tilquhillie and I'm not sure if they're organic but you can check them out HERE.

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Art of The Brick London

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Last week was half term during which time Orlaith and I popped down to East London to check out the Art of The Brick exhibition. I love finding galleries to take Orlaith to because I like her to open her imagination and see what it's possible to create. And when I saw that someone was using Lego to create big models with, something she has and plays with herself, I knew we had to go.

Nathan Sawaya, the creator behind Art of The Brick, spent over 4,000 hours and 1 millions bricks creating the pieces on display at the exhibition. There were a few really impressive pieces, a few which oozed creativity, and a few which looked like they had been put together to fill empty space. The pieces are predominantly set in dark rooms using light projections to create different effects. I can't say I'm a fan of so many dark rooms for an exhibition, but that's just a personal preference. It felt nice to step into the white walled room where some photography was displayed alongside Lego props, it was my favourite part of the whole gallery. I found the photography and composition stunning.

Once you've made your way around the exhibition there is a room with buckets of Lego for the kids to play with, a Duplo soft play area for the smaller children and of course lots of Lego merchandise for sale. I'm glad we went and I think it was great for Orlaith to see such large scale things made from little lego bricks, however I think the admission prices are a bit steep. On a positive note, there is a free cloakroom onsite and, being next to Brick Lane, there is so much to do in the area before or after your gallery visit. Why not grab a bowl of cereal at the Cereal Killer Cafe?

Art Of The Brick will be in London until 12th April 2015. You can book tickets to visit the exhibition HERE

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For The Love of Pancakes

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Pancakes are one of my absolute favourite foods! It's all about the sweet pancakes for me. I've tried savoury ones a few times and I'll stick to what I like which is the sugar! But due to my love of the sweet stuff I don't make pancakes very often, so when I get an excuse to make them I make the bejeezus out of them.

On pancake day we had pancakes for breakfast (at our friends house where we'd stayed over) and then we got to my mums house where we had them for brunch too.

We had two topping options: lemon and sugar, and a homemade chocolate sauce (made without sugar or dairy). I always use the same pancake recipe and I've never strayed from it because it produces the perfect pancakes. I switch out everything for dairy free options and they still turn out perfectly. The secret is a good non-stick pan, plenty of butter for cooking (dairy free butter for me) and making the pancakes as thin as possible. You can find the fail-free pancake recipe I use HERE.

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