Category Archives: Snacks/Desserts

Best Oatmeal Cookies!

I’m that kind of person who gets inspiration from just anything. The other day as I was doing some shopping in the supermarket, I saw a packet of oats and there and then I knew I wanted to buy some.

The oats I used
The oats I used

 

Disclaimer: Prior to this, I had never had oatmeal cookies and the only oats I’d ever  tasted were part of my breakfast cereal.

Now to the recipe, since I was venturing into the unknown and we all know that Google is your friend, I researched on a recipe and settled on this one with some few tweaks.

Ingredients:

3 eggs well beated – I only had two

1 cup raisins

1/2 cup mixed peel – my own addition

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 cup margarine

1 cup sugar

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp baking soda

2 cups oatmeal

For the desired best results start by combining the eggs, raisins, mixed peel and vanilla essence and let it stand for one hour.

The eggs and raisins
The eggs and raisins

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One hour later…

Cream the margarine and sugar.

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Add the flour, salt, cinnamon and baking soda and mix well.

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after mixing well
after mixing well

Blend in the eggs raisin mixture and oatmeal and mix well.

the egg, raisin, mixed peel mixture
the egg, raisin, mixed peel mixture
the oats
the oats

The dough will be stiff. Don’t be alarmed. Roll them into balls and place on an ungreased baking sheet and flatten slightly.

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Bake at 350°F for 10 to 12 minutes or until slightly browned.

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I used only half the dough. The rest I wrapped in some cling film then put it in the freezer. For the frozen cookie dough, always remove it about an hour before using to allow it to thaw.

crunchy
crunchy

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Very delicious and crunchy, a favourite of hubby’s.

Variations: You can also add desiccated coconut or chocolate chips.

 

 

Chicken Mshikaki

I’m always in search of a challenge when it comes to cooking.

A while back I bought wooden skewers just for the sake of having them in my kitchen. I normally use them for checking the readiness of my baked goodies but this time round I decided to put them into good use. I have never made mshikaki before so I was just following my instincts on the flavourings.

The key thing for this recipe to be a huge success is marination. Sadly, I thought of the recipe a tad late and hence I didn’t marinate and there was no way I was going to put it off for the next night, impatient much?

Anyway, enough with the chatting let the action begin.

Ingredients:

2 boneless chicken breasts

1 orange bell pepper cubed

1 green bell pepper cubed

1 large red onion roughly chopped into big pieces

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

For the marinade

2 tablespoons soy sauce

3 cloves of garlic minced

2 inched ginger crushed

Equipment

Skewers, metallic or wooden will do. I used wooden ones.

It’s advisable to marinate the chicken overnight but if you are in a rush like I was, you can marinate for at least 30 minutes before cooking. In a bowl mix the marinade, soy sauce, ginger and garlic. Add in the chicken pieces and coat them completely.

chicken marinating
chicken marinating

 

If you are using wooden skewers make sure to soak them in water 30 minutes prior to using to ensure they don’t burn when grilling the mshikaki.

After the marination and the skewers are ready, you can now assemble the mshikaki, yippee!!

In a shallow plate add your bell peppers and onions season with a little bit of salt and the pepper then drizzle over the vegetable oil.

For the bell peppers, the more colourful they are the better, so go for red, yellow and orange.

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The next step is pretty hands on and I only managed to take pics of the end result seeing that hubby was also helping me to assemble them.

On a skewer start with the bell pepper followed by the onion then the chicken piece then repeat the step until the desired amount. It’s best to leave space on the skewer for someone to hold it when eating. Continue these steps until all the chicken is used up.

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You can either grill these on an outside grill or use a grill pan, seeing that I have neither I grilled mine in the oven.

Place them on a grill rack and grill on each side for 10 minutes or until the chicken is done.

Serve and enjoy with friends.

Excuse the lighting, I forgot to take the pics while in the kitchen, my living room has the worst lighting for photos.

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Hubby: My Nutty experience

I love fruit salad, I have made this a few times.

My highlight was the cashews, they are yum yum.

Ingredients:

2 ripe bananas sliced

A handful of red seedless grapes

2 slices of pineapples diced (I used canned)

1 red apple diced

A handful of fried cashew nuts

Juice

In a salad bowl mix all the ingredients.

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in goes the cashews
in goes the cashews
grapes to add some colour
grapes to add some colour
some apple action
some apple action
 pineapple
pineapple
in goes my favorite
in goes my favorite

Finally, pour in the juice and mix in everything.

tadaa
tadaa

Serve chilled.

This is my first post ever.

Gatuiri’s hubby 🙂

Homemade Chocolate

Who doesn’t love chocolate? You there, put your hand down. Anyway, this is a recipe I found on you tube and I thought it would come in handy especially for guys who love baking with chocolate. You can also eat the chocolate.

The recipe is pretty easy and takes a short while to do well not taking into account the time need to freeze the chocolate.

Ingredients:

125 g vegetable shortening also known as vegetable fat

125 g confectioner’s sugar

6 tablespoons cocoa powder

4 tablespoons powdered milk (full cream)

powered milk, confectioner's sugar and cocoa powder
powered milk, confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder

Start by sifting all the dry ingredients in a bowl.

sifted dry ingredients
sifted dry ingredients

Over low heat, gently melt the vegetable shortening.

vegetable shortening melting
vegetable shortening melting

Pour the melted vegetable shortening over the dry ingredients.

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Stir it up.

Drip drip
Drip drip

Finally line a  baking tray with grease proof paper then pour the chocolate and put it in the freezer to set.

As usual, forgot to take the ends pictures. Sorry. Anyway, once the chocolate is set, you can munch away. To make it even more exciting, before putting it in the freezer you can add some chopped nuts either peanuts or cashews or hazelnuts to the chocolate then freeze. For the some fruits you can add dried sultanas or raisins.

Look out for the next post, and see how I used my chocolate in the frosting of a black forest cake.

Burnt Matoke Crisps

My dear mother calls me up to ask if I’d like some matoke (plantain/green bananas) and I’m like why not. She sends my brother to drop them off. Fast forward three days later, on that Thursday I manage to get home early and instead of just making the bananas in a stew I decide to make some crisps.

the bananas
the bananas

This recipe is pretty easy and quick to do. You only need  bananas, oil for frying them and salt to taste.

Start by peeling and washing the bananas.

Tip: Apply some vegetable oil on your hands before peeling the bananas to avoid the sap from sticking on your hands or you can wear a clear polythene bag as gloves and peel away.

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I cut the bananas into small horizontal slices, about a centimetre thick.

the matoke
the matoke

In a pan, heat oil then add the matoke slices. Ensure when putting the matoke you lay them in a single layer to avoid them from sticking to each other. Do not be tempted to keep turning them.

frying
frying

At this point, I heard a knock on the door, on opening it was my small brother Leon, he’d been sent by my other brother Sam to pick something from me. The first batch of the crisps were already cooked so I shared them with him while catching up.

So, this lady forgot all about the other crisps in the pan and by the time I got back to the kitchen this is what I found.

burnt!!!
burnt!!!

Imagine!!! Such disappointment. My dear friends when cooking these crisps please don’t leave the pan unattended lest you want burnt crisps. Taking of once bitten twice shy well that doesn’t apply to me since I successfully managed to burn the third bunch, unlucky much?

For the fourth and final batch I stood watch and even reduced the heat just to be on the safe side. Luckily they didn’t burn. I saved them for hubby.

matoke crisps
matoke crisps

Though few, they are pretty tasty.

Hubby loved them.

Now, I’ve purposed to personally buy matoke and make these crisps.

Chocolate and Vanilla Muffins

I just felt like baking, plus I had some leftover yoghurt and I decided I’ll use it instead of milk.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup margarine

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

2 tablespoons vanilla essence

3/4 cup plain yoghurt

1/4 cup water

2 cups all purpose flour

3 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg powder (optional)

A handful of sultanas

Start by greasing your muffin tin and remember to pre heat your oven at 350 degrees F (about 175 degrees C).

Using a wooden spoon/ spatula cream your sugar and margarine.

The sugar and margarine mixture

Then add in the eggs one by one.

in goes the egg

Add the vanilla essence.

In another bowl combine the dry ingredients except the cocoa powder,cinnamon and sultanas.

flour,salt,baking powder

Add the flour mixture to the creamed sugar in three parts alternating with the yoghurt.

pour in a 1/3 of the flour

Take the sultanas and coat them with about a tablespoon of flour. This will ensure that they won’t sink to the bottom of the muffins while baking.

flour coated sultanas

Fold them into the cake batter. In case the batter is a bit think add about 1/4 cup of water.

Now for the chocolate part;

In another bowl, mix the cocoa powder,cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix with about 2 tablespoons of water to get a semi thick paste.

cocoa powder, cinnamon and nutmeg
semi-thick paste

Add half the batter into the paste and stir.

Pour out some of the vanilla better into the muffin tins, about a quarter in each tin.

the vanilla

Then add the chocolate batter. Sadly I don’t have pics since at that point my phone’s charge was out… 😦

Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

Muffins!!!

Choc-vanilla muffins

Verdict:

Tasty and pretty moist, I guess it’s because of the yoghurt.

Perfect for an afternoon snack with some tea or hot chocolate.

Anything goes

You basically put all the fruits you have on hand and make a smoothie.

Ingredients:

2 ripe bananas sliced

A handful of strawberries, hauled and sliced

3-4 grapes (i had the ones with seeds)

2 tree tomatoes

1/2 mango diced

1 cup vanilla yoghurt

Smoothies are best for quick lunches and breakfasts. They are pretty filling.

In a blender, throw in all the fruit pieces

mango slices,grapes,strawberry halves,tree tomato and bananas

Add the vanilla yoghurt.

Beautiful colours

Blend for about 3 minutes.

Blending

Smoothie 🙂

Delicious.

Serve chilled. Enjoy.