Friday, 11 December 2015

This week in my kitchen :: Autumn Comfort Food, Buddha Bowls to bring a smile to your soul...

last image via

As we slip towards the winter solstice my craving for carbohydrates seems to increase daily. I long for risotto, brown rice, mashed root vegetables or pasta. The porringer got taken down off the shelf to use and I check out the winter breakfast section of Miss Dahl's Voluptuous Delights for pancake recipes. Maybe this year it's the comfort needed to cope with the madness going on everywhere, images of refugee babies in crowded rowing boats, shootings, terror attacks, threats of war and there's nothing I can do to help. I'm trying to eat away the misery, or maybe pad it out... 

Curiously whilst I have this seasonal longing for typical cold weather food, simultaneously my head is in spring planting mode when it comes to the garden. We've only just decorated the Christmas tree even though we've had it since the 2nd. (An extreme reaction After last years eleventh hour dash when it looked like we were too late to find one.)  But it was the stolen hour (maybe two) sitting at the kitchen table, carefully spent collecting seeds from pods and seed cases that I'd stored in paper bags hanging up to dry; that proved to be the therapy. The calm that helped a little...

I found a gem of a book for  £1.99 in a charity shop. The Bedside book of the Garden by Dr D G Hessayan author of all those hundreds of 'The Expert' guides. It's beautiful and different. There isn't any expert advice in this one. He introduces us to the historical gardeners who've changed the landscape of gardens all over the world. Those I'd heard of like Lancelot Capability Brown and Gertrude Jekyll He tells their tale but also introduces us to those (I'd) never heard of. Paints pictures of interesting individuals and their plant collecting adventures...It's hard to put down...

Baking has gone out of the window recently since the Christmas cake and the odd savoury pie. We're not big dessert eaters but it's nice to know that at a moments notice I can put together something sweet, when that's what someone's tooth craves and a piece of fruit won't do. 

As long as there's:

Something creamy: yoghurt, ice cream or frozen bananas (whizzed up they make a kind of dairy-free banana ice cream)
Something fruity: preferably berries
Sauces: maple syrup, homemade black current sauce, medjool dates stones removed and beaten  with a little hot water they make a fudgy sauce, espresso, or the seeds of a ripe passion fruit maybe a little drizzle of liqueur...or sometimes one or two together
Crunch:is good too but not crucial. This can be supplied by nuts, flaked or otherwise,a crunchy biscuit or oats or other cereal.   

Buddha bowl

Ingredients for two people: 

  • One cup of Brown rice
  • One ripe avocado
  • Two small spring onions
  • Eight radishes
  • A piece of fresh ginger root, approximately an inch long
  • Fresh flat leafed parsley
  • Soy or Tamari sauce
  • Apple cider vinegar, preferably raw with the mother
  • Sesame seeds
  1. Cook the brown rice as per the package. Basically with long grain brown rice you wash the rice, cover with boiling water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and cook for about ten minutes until ready. Drain and then use as required. With short grain brown rice cook one cup of rice with one and a half of cold water. Cover and cook for ten minutes or so until all water has been absorbed.
  2. Whilst the rice is cooking peel all of the vegetables and de-stalk and chop the parsley.
  3. When the rice is ready place into a serving bowl and add soya sauce and cider vinegar to taste. Add all the vegetables a mix roughly. Top with the parsley and a good sprinkle of sesame seeds. 
This is just one version but the possibilities are endless. They are lovely with sautéed garlic greens of any kind and kimchi or Japanese pickled ginger any other vinegars sauces that you like. It's one to play around with.

You can link to the leek and mushroom risotto recipe over here. Ahmad who has never eaten risotto and I don't think  ever will, made this for me one day when I was really busy. He just asked how to do it, I explained, and hey presto he did. It was the best one I've ever tasted... ( I know, how lucky am I...)

I wonder what's been happening in your kitchen this week... to tell...


  1. a husband who cooks!!! (mine can make toast and boil hot dogs....not the gourmet delight I EVER crave!!!)

    1. Oh I know...! I don't like to brag Steph, but it's hard not too...
      Toast is good though especially with Marmite...just the right amount, or Frank Cooper's Vintage Oxford Marmalade...
      I'm feeling a bit peckish now...
      Have a great weekend,

    2. Good sharing with healthy recipe, yes, apple cider vinegar (ACV) helps to boost metabolism, blocks the body’s storage of dietary fat plus breaks down and dissolves existing body fat. A study at Australia’s University of Sydney in which subjects who consumed two tablespoon of ACV daily experienced fewer surges and crashes in blood sugar levels. Read more at:

  2. mmm, that bowl dish looks fabulous and something I could make!! Thank you :)

  3. Thanks for sharing the recipe, Debby. I doubt mine will look as pretty as yours, but I'll give it a try. For some reason I'm craving greens. My husband cooks too. As a matter of fact he's a better bread baker than I'll ever be. I think we are two lucky gals!


    1. Ooh, green those too. We are, Ahmad'g got some in the oven now and the smell wafting upstairs is amazing. I must have done something good to deserve him. We are very lucky.
      Have a great weekend,

  4. It feels like forever sinCE I have visited your lovely blog...I've missed it. Your buddha bowl looks amazing...avocado, spring onions and radishes are always a win in my book. :)

  5. It feels like forever sinCE I have visited your lovely blog...I've missed it. Your buddha bowl looks amazing...avocado, spring onions and radishes are always a win in my book. :)

    1. Hi Emily. It's so good to hear from you. I miss your blog posts too. I visited your instagram pages recently but can't comment yet. I will join the club eventually as soon as we're a bit straighter here. Then we'll be able to keep in touch a bit more.
      Have a great week,