Happy New Year!!!
I hope you’ve all had a happy and healthy Christmas, and a joyous night last night.
My New Year this year was lovely. Our celebration was quiet and special, and for me the moment led mto some very cathartic reflection.
For the past few years I’ve been increasingly veering away from New Years resolutions in the classical “This year I won’t…” or “This year I’ll stop…” sense. Instead it seems to be a perfect time to get really excited about the year ahead and to filter that excitement into an enthusiasm about the things that I would like to strive to start, or to achieve in the next year. Last year one of my goals was to start the blog, and to begin to find joy through better nutrition. The two went hand in hand, and I’m really happy about the start that I’ve made on both. So this year some of my goals are to try and write a bit every single day, and to do some yoga everyday. I’d also like to improve my photography as that’s something that I’ve been really enjoying, and to continue to learn about web design. I think that just the act of writing those things down and putting it somewhere that you can see it (I keep mine in the front of my calender, the one object that I seriously rely on to stop me from being completely scattered) feels like such a positive thing, like you’re doing something of value for yourself, and are coming up with a tangible plan to improve bring you joy and fulfillment.
Along the same line, I love the idea of doing something physical to rid yourself of any bad stuff that’s brought you down in the last year. Buddy once spent a New Years in Galapagos where they have a tradition of (as I understand it) making papier mache effigies representing the bad things from the past year that you don’t want to take with you into the new year, and burning them at midnight. While the burning of effigies part is a little over the top for me I think (plus with the wind up here that could get ugly), I do really like the idea of doing something to acknowledge that you’re leaving behind those things that have brought you down. So this year I wrote down on a piece of paper the stuff that I had decided I was going to let go of and leave behind with 2015, crumpled it up, and as the remaining minutes of the year waned, set it ablaze in the kitchen sink. It was really cathartic and clearly held an appropriate wink of the dramatic to it which is also very satisfying to someone who tends in that direction anyway…maybe I should re-think my stance on effigy burning…
So with last years burdens torched, and exciting new intentions set, I’m leaping into 2016 with butter-free spelt scones and cranberry clementine curd!
For the scones I turned to this beautiful recipe from one of my favourite blogs; The Minimalist Baker. I adapted it by making a couple of swaps and omissions, and the scones came out beautifully. They’re soft, flaky and sweet. Delicious. For the curd I came across this wonderful recipe at A Whole New Twist, for Lemon Curd. I had no idea that you could make curd with coconut oil instead of butter, and with honey in place of sugar. It is delicious, and you would never know that those ingredients had been substituted. Very exciting.
So again, Happy New Year. Wishing you all a year filled with love, laughter and adventures, and all of the things that make you the happiest!
- 1 egg
- 150g plain yogurt
- 360g whole spelt flour
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 4 Tbsp runny honey
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 6 Tbsp coconut oil, cool enough to be solid
- Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius and line a couple of baking sheets with baking parchment.
- Measure the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl together and stir until well combined.
- In a small jug measure out the yogurt and honey. Add the egg and beat until smooth and evenly combined.
- Scoop the oil into the flour and rub it together until it’s the texture of fine bread crumbs and there aren’t any lumps of the oil left.
- Add the liquid ingredients to the flour/oil mix and squeeze it together with your fingers to begin to form a rough dough.
- Tip it onto a counter and squash it all together just enough that the dough holds together, and then flatten it out to a depth of about 1 1/2 cm. Cut out circles and lay them carefully on the baking tray.
- Place the baking tray in the pre heated oven and leave to bake for 20-25 minutes until dark golden brown and risen.
- Leave to cool on a wire rack. Serve while still a little warm.
- I didn't have a round cutter for these and so I cut the top (about 1 1/2" deep) from the 150g yogurt pot and used that to cut out the scones. The size is perfect!
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 100g fresh cranberries
- 75 mL water
- 1 tsp clementine zest (from 4-5 clementines)
- 60 mL clementine juice (from 3-4 clementines)
- 75g runny honey
- 6 Tbsp coconut oil, melted but not hot
- A pinch of fine sea salt
- Place the cranberries and water in a small pot over medium high heat. Bring them to the boil, and leave boiling 4-5 minutes until the cranberries have all burst. Leave to cool and then pass through a sieve so you’re left with a smooth puree.
- Place the eggs, egg yolks and honey into a small pot over medium heat and whisk continually until well combined.
- Add the remaining ingredients and continue to whisk while the mixture heats to a simmer, and then until it begins to thicken, about 5-8 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and pass the curd through a sieve, gently pushing it through with a rubber spatula to leave the curd smooth and lump free.
- Leave it to cool with a piece of cling film directly on the surface to stop it from forming a skin.
- Once completely cool, store it in the fridge where it will keep for about a week.