As with each passing day and the closer we get to Christmas everything starts to get more and more manic, the shops are busier, more traffic on the road, people rushing around I think now more than ever it's important to just take a moment for yourself. Even if it's just five minutes a day will help you put things into perspective and you will feel more able to face the stresses that come with the festive period. It can be the smallest things such as a good cup of coffee or tea while paging through your favourite magazine or an extra long shower, making time to see friends or brisk walk in the fresh air.
At the moment working from home around two young children, one who is not sleeping very well means I am very short for time so I am trying to surround myself with things that make me feel calm and happy. One of those is fresh flowers, there is something about the scent and smell that seems to balance me when I am feeling a little overwhelmed. I had a beautiful bouquet delivered this week from Prestige Flowers and placed it in the kitchen so every morning I have a little pick me up from the beautiful array of white avalanche roses and purple lisianthus which have been arranged by one of their skilled florists. I am one of those people who are easily pleased with it comes to simple pleasures and nature, I much prefer a bunch of flowers over something that will collect dust and never be used and only cause clutter. If your a bit like that there are some beautify Christmas bouquets (that come with some delicious truffles for an extra treat).
Another simple pleasure that involves the kitchen is baking healthy treats for my family, it's so therapeutic and something I have been doing ever since my youngest started weaning. What I love best is trying new recipes, sometimes they work sometimes they don't, it's all about trial and error. I am really happy that at my son's school they have a healthy eating policy, it's a very small school and they have a hot homemade meal every lunchtime alongside a fresh salad and on a Friday as a treat they have a fruit pudding. I know how important having a balanced breakfast is really important and you don't want anything that is going to cause to much of a sugar spike so when Bright Horizons who run a nursery in Fulham got in touch to ask me to try out one of the recipes from their Family cookbook I thought the Summer Fruit Muffins sounded like a great after school snake or breakfast on the go as it contains wholemeal flour and bran flakes.
These Muffins are super easy and rustle up and we all really enjoyed them and they are packed with fresh berries. I have followed the recipe loosely but this is still my take on it as I have made a few subtle changes with what I had on hand
50g low sugar Bran Flakes
250ml Milk or Milk Alternative
105g Wholemeal Spelt Flower
1 tsp Baking Powder
50g Butter or Dairy Free spread
1 Free Range Egg
175g fresh Raspberries
1. Start by soaking the bran flakes in the milk and set aside for 10minutes
2. In a mixing bowl sift together the flower and baking powder.
3. In a separate bowl cream the butter and sugar together and next beat the egg into the mixture
4. Add the soaked bran flakes and milk to the butter and sugar mixture and then gentle add this to the dry ingredients.
5. Then gently fold the fruit into the mixture
6. Place the paper cases in a muffin tray and fill each one half way.
7. Place the tray in a preheated oven and bake for around 30 minutes at 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4
Thanks to Prestige Flowers for the beautiful flowers and Bright Horizons for asking to me try out their recipes.