Wednesday, October 12, 2016

State of the Gina

Heya people!

My craft projects have somewhat been hibernation during the summer as I focused on working out quite extensively - up to six times a week - and trying to keep my diet balanced. Now as the days are getting shorter, weather's been changing for my favorite season and I feel a little bit like cocooning at home - plus I'm starting to wear lots of my knitwork - my focus is again shifting. And as a cold has me knocked out at home at the moment I even find time to blog again...

Where did I leave off? I'm still working on the mid-calf length black coat for myself. I started another beaded shawl with a pattern off Boo Knits for my Mom which should have been done by Mother's Day (oooooops) and I have some small things going like a simple cowl which I took with me on the plane as I spent a few days in Berlin for LinuxConf Europe last week, or like some socks for my son.

Speaking of Berlin I met a whole lot of amazing people and one of them (hi Carol!) commented on how she liked my Dragonfly Shawl and if I would make something like this on commission? I was kind of surprised as nobody had asked me such a thing before... We're now in the process of figuring out the pattern and colorways and then I'm off into my first project like this! I'm so much used to making things for myself and my loved ones that I rarely get to think outside the box aka colorways I love - this should be fun!

So, what else... I have advanced into the "don't eat crap" territory enough that I've started to swap ingredients for recipes on the fly and am making up new recipes on the go that fit my needs. A book that has helped me tremendously with understanding nutrition and changing diet accordingly for me was Jillian Michaels' "Master Your Metabolism" - I heartily recommend it if you want to understand how your body works when it comes to hormones and nutrition and how you can best influence your body food-wise.

I have further ventured into US-ian cooking, finally caved in and ordered some proper measuring cups which make life a lot easier. I also acquired "The Joy Of Cooking" and will try to make good use of it - I'm thinking of doing a Thanksgiving menu this year with a few of the usual dishes that go with it - wish me luck! :-)

Last but not least I'm leaving you with a recipe for some muffins I whipped up last night. I had a craving for the typical spices of fall, wanted something a little sweet yet savory and not too unhealthy. It's a recipe heavily modified from one of the muffin cook-books I have so I have no qualms posting it...

Oh, and as I'm no English native speaker and my kitchen vocabulary is still a little sketchy please feel free to send me corrections/hints for improvement - the various ways to contact me can be found here. Thank you!

Healthy Breakfast Muffins

100g dried fruits (dates, figs, apricots)
200g + 1 tbsp flour
100g bran flakes
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 egg (organic)
100g demerara sugar or maple syrup
80ml neutral oil (e.g. sunflower seed)
250g buttermilk

Caveat - I use wholegrain spelt flour for almost anything these days, as it soaks up fluids roughly as much as regular flour. If you want to use wholegrain wheat flour you might want to reduce the amount to 10% less as the muffins will probably get too dense/dry.

Pre-heat oven to 180°C/360°F (160°C/320°F if you have a convection oven), prepare muffin baking pan accordingly.

Blend the dried fruits and the 1 tbsp of flour and set aside (this went pretty badly at my first try but I managed to save the recipe in the end, see below ;-) ). Lightly crush the bran flakes, mix with flour, baking powder and ground cinnamon in one bowl.

In another bowl combine egg, maple syrup, oil and buttermilk and mix until well blended. Add the dry fruit mixture (this had formed a hard lump so I tossed the fruit into the liquid mixture and used my hand blender to make this work) and then add the flour mixture. Stir until all ingredients are properly mixed and wet but don't over-stir, fill into the muffin pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Enjoy!


Yields 12 - nutritional values per piece:
- 200kcal
- 7,7g fat
- 27g carbs
- 4,9g protein

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