31 day challenge day 27

Standard

Your favourite recipe?

Due to my chocolate addiction it has to be this one. (About the healthiest chocolate bar you can get – tastes delicious too!)

Ingredients:
• 14 tablespoons virgin coconut oil (warm if needed)
• 10 level tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
• 5 tablespoons unsweetened, pure, grated coconut
• 1 tablespoon muscovado sugar or demerara sugar (If you don’t use dates or raisins you might want to use 2 tablespoons sugar.)
• 1 or 2 handfuls chopped dates or whole raisins
• 1 handful or less of chopped almonds (I use mixed nuts nuts)
• a pinch of salt

.
• 3 teaspoons cinnamon (could be more, or less, to taste) This is optional, as is almost everything else in this recipe except the coconut oil and the cocoa!
• vanilla extract

Instructions:
1. Stir the cocoa powder into the coconut oil till thoroughly blended.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir well.
3. Place the mixture in either a mold or a tray approximately 3 inches by 6 inches, though this can vary depending on how thick you want your healthy chocolate bar
4. Now put it in the refrigerator. If you are making a bar, after it’s been in the fridge for about 20 or 30 minutes, you may want to score it. This will make it possible to serve it in nice little symmetrical bite-sized pieces once it’s hardened.

(Warning since it is natural the chocolate will start to melt in your fingers (hence bite size pieces) so keep tissues handy.)

31 day challenge day 25

Standard

woman question

Your five favourite blogs?

OK this is where I throw in the towel. I saw this one coming about a week ago and ever since then I’ve been trying to decide. I’ve even made lists and tried to edit them down but it’s impossible. I just like so many blogs and for all kinds of different reasons, some because they they are my blog taste (literary with integrity and beautifully woven words) some because they embrace causes I’m in sympathy with, Christian, social, ethical or preservationist, some because they are about things I know nothing about (Africa, fashion, music etc.) some because of the great photos or lay out, some just because they are a bit zany and I like to be crazy now and then.

So, sorry, there are some I frequent more than others but there’s no way I could narrow that down to five (or twenty five). There are just too many great blogs out there! I could spend all day exploring but I have to ration myself so I don’t turn into a “blog worm”!

31 day challenge day 24

Standard

reading

Your favourite childhood book?

This is difficult for me as my childhood is such a distant memory and I was an avid reader (usually reading 4-5 adult size books a week!) I even walked along the street reading, stopping only to cross roads. I was never without a book.

The only memory I have of a particular book from my younger childhood was “Winnie the Poo”, but that’s only because the librarian insisted a four year old couldn’t read a book like that, so asked me to prove it before she’d let me take it out. I did, but it was my pride in scoring over the librarian rather than actually liking the book that kept it in my memory (I said I had pride problems lol!) I should add also my sister taught me to read long before I ever went to school so she really should take credit for that!

I do remember when around ten being very fond of my dad’s Sir Walter Scott’s books. I’m not sure of the title of my favourite, but I think it was “Beltane the Smith” one of his lesser known ones but very romantic. I couldn’t abide the usual run of books my classmates used to read (“Famous Five” adventures were  particularly popular). I much preferred the classics and read pretty much all the age appropriate ones.

31 day challenge day 21

Standard

Your 10 favourite foods?

1) Chocolate. (My only addiction!) dark, no milk and not much sugar. I have a great homemade recipe using a cocoa powder and coconut oil base (add raisons, nuts, seeds, dates etc according to taste) which is at least pretty healthy.

2) Mangos. I’m crazy about all fruit (particularly the tropical kind) the fresher the better. Tropical fruit is no good here in the UK though as its artificially ripened and just doesn’t have the same flavour. Mangos for example should be soft in texture like a peach not rock hard! (My grandson didn’t know that).

3) Avocados. I didn’t like these when I was young but now I’m crazy about them (maybe there’s something my body needs now that it didn’t before).

4) Yes, I do feel horrid about it (eating lambs) but every now and then I must confess to eating a lamb chop or two, they’re so delicious.

5) Italian ice-cream (the real stuff found only in Italy). Yes, I know its not healthy but your taste buds haven’t lived till you taste it (add sultry Italian evening, good friends and that passing smile from a romantic looking Latin…. whoops! Back to reality!)

5) Chinese moon cake. I do like the usual ones (with a salty egg surprise in the middle of altra sweet cake) but they wouldn’t make this list. They actually come in many different types. There’s one I only had once as its a specialty (and expensive) made with mostly nuts and fruit, that is list worthy!

6) My daughter’s homemade cheesecake, heavy on the lemon and light on the sugar (best cake I ever tasted – shame she lives in China.)

7) Peking duck. Soft slices of duck you roll in a white pancake with shredded cucumber and spring onion and a special sauce – its the sauce that makes it. I still remember when I first ate it! (It’s not the same here all Chinese restaurant food tends to be “Chinglishised” to sell to the English.

8) Polish bread. I can’t find it in London now (they sell Polish things but not that particular kind). It was heavy and grainy, full of flavour and nutrition just how I like my bread.

9) Italian pizza straight from a stone Italian pizza oven. Horribly fattening but delicious, again think the setting red wine, cool evening, whoops there I go again!

10) Smoked salmon. Mmmmm! I could eat a whole plate full if only it was cheaper.

31 days challenge day 6

Standard

Your 5 Senses Right Now.

Hmmm… this one can be looked at two ways? Does it mean what are my senses perceiving right now or how well are they functioning right now?

1) Taking the latter first, my most used (over used) sense is sight. I was born with excellent eye sight but now need glasses some of the time. Being an artist (at least part time) all my life my eyes are my most “feel good” sense. I love to “just look” particularly at nature I feast on it as a gourmet might feast on a meal.

Right now they are constantly straying from the keyboard to the window because the first snow has just fallen.

2) Probably my next favourite (or most used) is touch. I studied sculpture so my sense of touch is highly developed. I love to touch things (and people ha! Hugs, kisses, back rubs etc.)

At present I’m still feeling the fresh sensation of a shower and the softness of the mango and coconut butter in my home made body butter. The lap top keys are smooth and clean, the temperature warm and cosy. In my little central heated apartment I can enjoy snow in comfort!

3) Very important but not particularly developed (and now losing some of its former reliability with age) is hearing. It’s served me well while being somewhat neglected, preventing many an accident and allowing me to enjoy the sweet sounds of nature, music and the communications of others.

Right now all is silent except for the slight hum of the radiator trying to keep pace with the drop in temperature outside.

4) What next? Smell. Though I’ve given it little attention I’ve always had a good sense of smell. I often use it as my “private detective,” assessing, teeth brushed, hands washed etc. I do have a few favourite smells I’ll wallow in, fresh bread cooking, earth, a forest, oddly horse stables, but I cannot stand the smell of coffee! Lol!

What can I smell now? Oddly nothing. I guess I’m so familiar with my room’s smells I can’t discern anything.

5) Last (because I’m probably the furthest from a “foodie” you could imagine) comes taste. This as you may guess is a rather underdeveloped sense for me. I do have a few favourites that  make me appreciate this sense though, chocolate, strong, dark, without milk and very little sugar (I often make my own), roast meat, (why I’m not a vegan) fresh fruit yum! Yum!

Presently my mouth is empty so no tastes to report.

31 day challenge day 3

Standard

My favourite quote?

That’s hard I have hundreds of favourites! I love how a tiny quote can stand alone conveying such profundity

At present with all the news that requires a box of tissues by my laptop I have to say (along with my Song Bird post) my favourite is probably:

“I had fainted unless I believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living”.(Bible)

It brings hope for the world to my heart.