There was a cold spell, and I hate cold. (It’s marginally warmer now – like -17 instead of -40.) So instead, I covered up in blankets, hunkered down in my man cave living room (which is the only actually warm room in the house) and wrote. I also shuffled between here and the kitchen as there’s no stove in the man cave . I have a book to read, and I require coziness to do so. That book, Road to Tomorrow, by Mary Metcalfe, was pretty great, and you can find out more about it at the end of this post – after some cooking.
This, is my experience.
It’s almost like a breeze blows through the walls of the house, down the chimney (which would be marvelous if it were usable, but it’s not), down the balloon framing through the gap in the solid oak pocket doors. Oh wait, that really is whats happening. I can also hear the breeze blow porch chairs north to south a la paranormal activity. They stop when they hit the south wall with a thud.
The kitchen, for sheer size difference has the potential to be warmer. Stoves, hot water, boiling kettle and smaller cubic feet to heat all mean it has the potential to be a cozy nest. Yet somehow the man cave is warmer, even if the room temperature is about 6 degrees colder. It’s a comfortable enclosure, which once finished will have functionality built into inspirational space. I find it odd, the realization that I might actually have found the space where a novel can finally find space on a hard disk. I still like the man cave best with its various trinkets, candles and non-functional fireplace.
However, it really needs to be cleaned up, and the curtains for those pocket doors should really be installed. I’ll get around to it eventually, and I’ll tidy up when I feel like it, or when I decide there’s enough of a reason to. In the cold that is the winter though, the only warm spot in the house really is the kitchen and its tiny pantry. Besides, there’s smoked salmon, and various forms of cous cous and braed. There’s a whole freezer of food, and a good reason to cook something that will last through the week. Which really means I can be lazy all week and have food that just needs to be warmed up.
Banana chocolate chip oatmeal muffin porridge
I found it on Pinterest, Next time I’d add some sort of starch to help hold the oatmeal together. I also used part granola, part rolled oats. It was delicious oatmeal, but it wasn’t quite a porridge muffin. That said, it’s totally edible, and tastes pretty good, and there’s a bunch more of them for breakfast/lunch-fast.
This, is the original recipe. Feel free to use/change it up like I did. Like I said though, if you want it more like a muffin than porridge, add some more starch!
3 cups old-fashioned oats, 2 tsp. baking powder, 4 egg whites, 1 1/4 cup non-fat milk, 3/4 cup mashed bananas, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, honey
It’s not Banana Bread, but it’s delicious too!
Rather than make banana bread, since I already had banana porridge, I decided to use the same basic flour components and use up some peaches, oranges and pears in the fridge/freezer. Clearly, I needed
Here’s a tip though, freeze your bananas if they’re almost ready to be too ripe to eat, then thaw and mash them into your recipes – this works for pears too. Freezing makes banana taste more ‘banana-y’ by the way. I’m not really sure why, but it does.
The basic recipe consists of 2 cups flour 1/4 cup milk or cream 1/2 tsp salt 1/2 tsp soda.
To this version I added 3 ripe mashed pears, about 1 cup of oranges and peaches and thier juices. I also added 1/2 cup slivered almonds and some almond extract. Bake it at 350 for about and hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle. It should produce a crunch crust and soft bread-y inside. I have a thing for almond extract, so that’s probably why I liked it so much.
Besides all that, lunch seemed appropriate, and since the pantry has a desk and a reading chair it can be quite a warm space to get things done in. While I finished Road to Tomorrow by Mary Metcalfe, I really did want to eat something. So, I pureed some more zucchini butter, grilled my bread, added a little bit of shredded and feta cheese combined with grilled smoked salmon and made a tandoori salad.
If you’d like to join in all the tour fun with Mary Metcalfe and Novel Publicity, you can find all the info out here. I’ll be posting a review in February, and probably cooking more things to keep the house warm
The tour starts tomorrow, but you’ll have to wait a bit to find out why I liked this book. Until then, you can join in on the fun and prizes and awesomeness that comes with each and every Novel Publicity tour!
Mary Metcalfe lives in the foothills of the Laurentians, northeast of Ottawa, Canada with her husband, three cats and a very large dog. Love of writing runs in the family. Their daughter is a published literary non-fiction author. Clarion Review described Mary’s debut novel as a “sparkling debut… readers will love being swept along by Winds of Change.”Road to Tomorrow is her third novel in the Look to the Future series.
- Gluten- Free Chocolate Coconut Banana Almond Muffins (organizedsahm.wordpress.com)
- A healthy start to your day: buttered apple oatmeal porridge (nami-nami.blogspot.com)
- Friday Specials: Man-Cave (leartisteboots.wordpress.com)
- Paleo Banana Muffins (cavemanmodernwoman.wordpress.com)