I made these lovely homemade granola bars with mango and goji berries a few days ago with Harry. I decided it was a ‘toddler appropriate’ activity – this ended up with me frantically trying to mix the ingredients together while Harry grabbed handfuls of it and stuffed it in his mouth! At least he liked it!
I was kindly sent a selection of dried fruit recently from Forest Feast so that was another reason to try out making these bars. I decided mango and goji berry sounded like a good combination and along with the toasted sunflower seeds, they tasted really good.
Ingredients (makes approx 16 small bars)
- 75g butter plus extra for greasing
- 200g porridge oats
- 50g sunflower seeds
- 5 tbsp honey
- 50g light muscovado sugar
- 50g dried mango, diced
- 50 dried goji berries, chopped
- Roast the oats, and sunflower seeds in the oven for 10 minutes, at approx 150 degrees Celsius.
- Slowly warm the butter, honey and sugar in a saucepan, stirring until melted and combined.
- In a large bowl add all of the ingredients and mix together until all the oats are well coated. Tip into a large tin or dish, and press down to flatten.
- Chill in the fridge for 1 hour, then cut into bars.
These toddler friendly bars may not be the healthiest in the world due to the addition of some butter and sugar, but they taste great and still contain plenty of lovely healthy ingredients. You could swap the butter for peanut or almond butter to make them healthier, but this was a no go for us as Harry has a nut allergy. They keep really well in the fridge and are handy snacks at any time of the day.
For our wedding anniversary recently, we went out for some lovely Asian food in Belfast. The fried rice we had that night made me crave it so badly afterwards that I decided to give it a go myself. It turned out really good, and I’m so pleased I can now make this at home!
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 250g basmati rice, cooked
- Whole bunch of spring onions, chopped finely
- Stick of celery, diced
- Red pepper, diced
- Handful of Frozen peas
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 3 chicken breasts, diced
- Chopped chunks of ham (optional)
- Sesame oil – approx 3 tbsp
- Soy Sauce – approx 50ml
- Clove of garlic
- Pinch of chili flakes
- Tsp Ginger
- 2 Sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
- Heat some sesame oil in a wok. Add your chicken, garlic, chili and ginger. Stir fry until cooked through and transfer to a bowl.
- Add more oil, the red pepper, celery, peas, ham and most of the chopped spring onions and stir fry for a few minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
- In your wok, add your egg and let it cook like an omelette briefly. Then use your spatula to chop it up into small pieces.
- Add more oil, and the cooked rice, and stir fry for a few minutes.
- Add all of your other ingredients, some soy sauce and keep stirring until the rice has been coated well and is slightly golden.
- Serve immediately topped with some chill flakes, finely chopped sun dried tomatoes and spring onions.
When I was making this, I went through a stage where I thought it had gone wrong, and the rice was too sticky. But once it started to come together and all the other ingredients were added back to the wok, it turned out great and tasted so good. The sun dried tomatoes sound a bit odd, and the idea is stolen from the Belfast restaurant we went to, but they add something really nice to this version. I would highly recommend you give it a try!
These Date, Walnut, Coconut and Cocoa Protein Balls are the perfect healthy snack. They are full of good stuff, taste great and are really satisfying. Plus they are so easy to make!
Ingredients (makes 12)
- 100g walnuts
- 250g Forest Feast pitted dates
- 100g desiccated coconut
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder
- 3 Tbsp Chocolate protein powder
- 2 Tbsp Honey
- Pinch of salt
- Put all the ingredients into a food processor and blitz until completely blended.
- Shape small handfuls into balls about the size of a walnut.
The best thing about these little balls is their versatility; so you can change the ingredients depending on what you have in the cupboard. The dates and honey make them nice and sweet, but you could substitute the honey for coconut oil or peanut butter which would also taste great. If you don’t have protein powder, leave it out. Almonds or oats would be great instead of walnuts. The possibilities are endless!
I like the fact I can chuck one of these in my bag and know I have a healthy snack that tastes good and fills me up. Give them a go!