Coconut & Pineapple Overnight Oats

Breakfast

Oats is the preferred option for many to start their day. Oats are not only a great source of slow-release carbohydrate but also a really versatile ingredient to have in your kitchen cupboard. They don’t go off, are inexpensive and can be eaten as any meal of the day.

Meals that can be prepared in advance are great for time short people, find more meal prep tips here. Overnight oats are a great option for any busy person as all the work is done the night or even day before. A little bit of chopping and stirring is the only work required with eating taking the longest!

The options with overnight oats are endless and I have plenty more inspiration on the blog for you. My latest variation is inspired by my travels through South America and perfect for the summer season. Top with some more yoghurt, seeds, nuts or berries as you like.Overnight oats, Delalicious, breakfastServes 2.

  • 4 tbsp jumbo oats
  • 2 tbsp dessicated coconut
  • 1 cup fresh pineapple, chopped
  • 5 tbsp yoghurt, plain
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 passion fruit
  1. Using a clean resealable jar or tub. Place all the items into the tub.
  2. Mix thoroughly together and place in the fridge overnight.Overnight oats, breakfast, pineapple, coconut
  3. Remove from the fridge in the morning, stir again and serve with a sprinkle of coconut, pineapple pieces and passionfruit.

Food Prep

Uncategorized

“Fail to prepare or prepare to go hungry!!”20170801_093019.jpgWell that’s my motto in life anyway! Of course you won’t starve as there are shops, cafes and restaurants in abundance only ready to soothe your hunger but also deplete your wallet.

Every day can be tough when living on a budget, travelling frequently, juggling a hectic schedule or just trying to make improved food choices for you and your family. This is where planning and preparation come into play. We plan and prepare ourselves everyday for a variety of tasks and activities. Sometimes to the outside world we can display ourselves as extremely organised but behind closed doors and particularly in the kitchen it can be chaos.

This is normal life for many and can be easily altered by following my top tips for each mealtime of the day.

Breakfast

I love breakfast and kind of can’t understand how people can leave the house without something eaten or a meal packed to eat on the commute. My favourite breakfast options can all be prepared in advance and take only minutes.

Top my homemade granola with some yoghurt and fresh fruit. Prepare an overnight oats pot the night before to grab and go in the morning. Freeze a batch of cupcake quiches for a quick protein hit in the morning. Blend a colourful juice or smoothie to get your day off to a colourful start. Overnight oats, bircher muesli, meal prep, Delalicious

Lunch

Depending on the time of year and my plans for the day my go-to lunch options are leftover dinner, salads and soups. Soup is a great option as it can be frozen in batches and defrosted quickly in the microwave. Have the soup on it’s own or add a slice of oat bread on the side. Salads can be eaten everyday, all you need to do is rotate your fillings. Store your salad contents in a jam jar to stop it going to mush with the more delicate items like salad leaves on top and the juicer contents like beetroot and tomato on the bottom. Here are my favourite combinations:

Dinner

You arrive in late from work, starving and don’t have the energy to cook, this is where your freezer becomes your best friend! Batch cook a big curry, lentil stew or risotto at the weekend, then simple portion and freeze. All you need to do is allow it to defrost in the fridge during the day or when you get home in the microwave. Revitalise this dish by adding some fresh leafy vegetables or adding a grilled protein source to a vegetable dish. Tinned fish is another great protein option to add to a frozen vegetable dinner. Here are some of my tried and tested batch cooking options:

Snacks

My mother used to describe me as a “grazer” at home and unfortunately I haven’t changed. Snacking is important for everyone but ensure you are eating correct portions. 

Nuts are such an easy option, pop a bag in your car, handbag or desk drawer to always have them on hand. A whole bag of nuts can disappear before you know it so check out this great infographic for nut portions.

Vegetable sticks and hummus I find are great for travelling. Snacking before exercise, I tend to eat a plain banana or some of my Banana & Nut Bites made ahead. Homemade muffins baked in advance, frozen and defrosted are perfect for outdoor adventures.Nuts, snack, meal prep, DelaliciousAs you can see, there are plenty of recipe options for each and every mealtime. Now it’s over to you. I challenge you to make one thing on this list and freeze or store it for later. Schedule some time during the next week or month to plan what meals you need to prepare in advance, what you would like to cook and the ingredients you need to purchase. By writing these things down, you formulate a plan and consciously make decisions about your mealtimes.

Before you know it, a healthy habit will be formed. Not only will this habit reward you with a full belly but also save time and money, keep you well nourished and in control of your mealtimes!

Keep an eye on my Instagram story where I often share the contents of my lunchbox.

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Baked Oat & Berry Pots

Breakfast, Snack

Is this recipe breakfast or dessert? How about both? Now that’s how every morning should start!

Oats are my favourite way to start the day. They are such a versatile ingredient that you never get tired of oats; start with some granola, porridge, overnight oats, add to a smoothie or try these baked oat and berry pots.

A cross between a souffle and porridge may be the best way to describe these without any of the stress. Use your favourite nuts and berries and you won’t go wrong.

For more Delalicious oat recipe inspiration click here.

Serves 2.

Oat & Berry Pots, Delalicious

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp nut butter
  • 6 walnut halves, chopped
  • 4 tbsp jumbo oats
  • 2 tbsp regular oats
  • 8 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp frozen or fresh berries, raspberries, blackberries, blackcurrants, blueberries
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp yoghurt
  1. Whisk the eggs and nut butter together in a large bowl.
  2. Add the walnuts, oats and milk and continue to whisk until well combined.
  3. Pour the mixture into two ovenproof ramekin dishes.
  4. Bake in the oven at 180C for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer comes out cleanly. You can also cook in a microwave on high for 3 minutes.
  5. For the berry coulis: stir the berries and water together in a small bowl. Place in microwave for 1 minute on high or simmer in a saucepan over a low heat for a few minutes until they begin to soften.
  6. To serve: spoon the yoghurt and berry coulis over the cooked oat pots.

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Crispy Sundried Tomato & New Potato Omelette

Breakfast, Lunch

Leftovers are delicious but sometimes a bit of a challenge to revitalise into an enticing dish to eat. New potatoes are literally bursting out of the ground at this time of the year and no doubt a few too many have been boiled at dinner time.

Potato salad is a great way to use up leftover potatoes with a little mayonnaise and some fresh chives. Omelettes and frittatas are the next best answer.

For this recipe, I had some leftover vegetables from a dinner the night previous but fresh ingredients will work great too. In the case of uncooked potatoes, steaming or baking in the microwave will speed things up a little for you.

Serves 2.

Sundried Tomato & New Potato Omelette, Delalicious

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp plain/ Greek yoghurt
  • 50ml milk
  • 1 tsp coconut oil, solid
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 50g cooked leftover carrots
  • 150g fresh spinach
  • 4 medium-sized new potatoes, sliced
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 5 sundried tomatoes, sliced
  1. Whisk the garlic, eggs, yoghurt and milk together in a measuring jug until well combined.
  2. Preheat a grill oven.
  3. Melt the coconut oil in a large ovenproof frying pan over a medium heat.
  4. Add the tomatoes and lightly get for a few minutes until the tomatoes soften. Roughly test the spinach with your hands and add to the tomatoes.
  5. Once the spinach begins to wilt, add the carrots, potatoes and rosemary. Stir to combine.
  6. Increase the heat to high and pour over the egg mixture. Sprinkle over the sundried tomatoes. Cook until the edges begin to harden and transfer to the grill oven. If the frying pan handle is plastic, wrap it in tinfoil to prevent it melting!!
  7. Allow the omelette to cook through under the grill for 5 minutes or until golden.

Do you have any great leftover recipe ideas? I would love to hear them, get in touch on social media.

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Caramelized Orange and Banana Pancakes

Breakfast, Snack

I am a self-professed pancake lover!! I would happily eat them every day if I could. These pancakes are what I like to call special occasion pancakes. You are not going to make them every day but when you do, you are in for a serious treat!

Pineapple would work great caramelized on top as a variation to orange and banana.

If you need anymore pancake inspiration try one of my other recipes. After all Who Doesn’t Love Pancakes!!

Serves 1.

Pancakes, Banana, Orange, Delalicious

  • 1 egg
  • 2 medium over-ripe bananas
  • zest of 1 mandarin orange
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 50mls milk or buttermilk
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar or ½ tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp plain Greek-style or natural yoghurt
  • 1 tsp seed mix (linseed, poppy, chia, sesame, buckwheat groats)
  1. Whisk together 1 banana, eggs, orange zest, baking powder and milk until smooth.
  2. Add the flour and whisk again until well combined.
  3. Melt 1/3 of the coconut oil on a non-stick pan over a medium heat.
  4. Place 1/3 of the pancake batter on the pan and cook through. Flip over and continue to cook.
  5. Remove from the pan and keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter making two more pancakes. Keep pancakes warm as you caramelize the fruit.
  6. Melt the butter and brown sugar together in the frying pan over a medium heat until it begins to bubble. Slice the banana into slices and cut the orange into three.
  7. Place the fruit onto the pan and spoon over the syrup. Cook for 2 minutes on a high heat until evenly browned.
  8. To serve: spoon yoghurt between pancakes to create a tower. Top with the caramelized fruit and sprinkle over the seeds. Spoon over any remaining syrup from the frying pan.

Berrylicious

Treats

I don’t know about you but I love raspberries!! It is possibly due to the fact that my home in Tipperary is usually filled to the gills with raspberries around this time of year. We have 40 year old raspberry bushes growing in our garden that deliver a whopper crop of berries every year. If you were to open the fridge at home you would be confronted by bowl after bowl of freshly picked berries. More importantly you wouldn’t be able to leave the house without a box of raspberries.20170629_191943.jpgAs I’m travelling away from home, I’m not able to help out this year with the picking, eating, preserving and creating of treats. I’ve decided to share with you my favourite tried and tested raspberry recipes.

Raspberries are at their best right now so find your nearest locally grown crop and taste the goodness of fresh berries. Freezing raspberries is a great option too to allow you keep tasting the goodness all year long.

img_5558-1Chocolate Avocado Mousse Cups – a light chocolate mousse topped with the freshest raspberries.

cheesecakeWhite Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake – ever so decadent but also very delicious.

img_5111Berry & Oat Muffins – any berry is good in these muffins filled with oats.

img_6154Dark Chocolate Raspberry Mousse Cake – the perfect summer celebration cake.

img_6263Berry & Oat Recharger – whizz up some raspberries for the perfect post-exercise recovery option.

Dark Chocolate & Walnut Afghan Cookies

Treats

Afghan cookies are a New Zealand classic treat. As I’m travelling around New Zealand at the moment, it would be rude not to eat like a local. Traditionally Afghan cookies are made with crumbled corn flakes. As I am not a major fan of corn flakes, I have substituted them for chopped walnuts. I think grated fresh or crystallized ginger would also be great additions to these cookies.

Don’t worry if the cookie mixture becomes quite dry when mixing. Simply mould the dough into a big ball and create cookie portions with your hands.

The cookies will keep fresh in a airtight container or bag for at least 4 days.

Makes 12 cookies.20170619_135409-01

  • 250g butter, softened
  • 65g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 50g walnuts, chopped
  • 200g dessicated coconut
  • 2 tbsp good quality cocoa powder
  • 300g plain flour
  • 50g dark chocolate
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 12 whole walnuts for decorating
  1. Preheat an oven to 180°C and grease a baking tray with a little coconut oil.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together with an electric beater.
  3. Add the vanilla essence, chopped walnuts and coconut.
  4. Sift in the cocoa and flour and mix well together.
  5. Place tablespoonfuls of the cookie dough on the prepared baking tray. Flatten each cookie with the back of a spoon and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.
  7. For the cookie icing: melt the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a simmering pan of water. Once melted, stir in the coconut oil until glossy.
  8. Spoon the chocolate over each cookie and add a whole walnut to finish.

 

 

The Taste of Dublin with Stuart O’Keeffe

Reviews

With this year’s The Taste of Dublin just around the corner, I decided to catch up with fellow Tipperary native Chef Stuart O’Keeffe. Stuart is amongst a whole host of culinary creators at this year’s event who are bringing the “Flavours of the World” to Ireland. Live demonstrations include the likes of Robin Gill from The Dairy in London, Gill Meller from River Cottage and closer to home, Aoife Noonan, Enda McEvoy and Clodagh McKenna are only a few of the names from over thirty leading world class chefs.

Chef Stuart O'Keeffe, Delalicious, interview

From Tipperary to West Hollywood, how did it all begin?

Stuart credits both his mother and aunt as catalysts for his cooking career and feels that we all should start cooking from a young age. “Both my mother and aunt are and were so passionate about cooking which made me love it even more. Looking back now, I am so glad I got involved. I make better choices cooking now and know what I am talking about.”

As Stuart’s recipes focus on wholesome and simple ingredients he feels that; “It’s so important for parents to cook for their kids at a young age, even if it’s just simple things. You don’t have to be a professional to cook for your family.”

For anyone who’s not read or flicked through Stuart’s first cookbook “The Quick Six Fix”. The recipes are incredibly wholesome and I was intrigued to find out where Stuart draws his inspiration from. “I get inspiration from everywhere, magazines, restaurants and sometimes just playing around in the kitchen with what I have at hand. I guess it’s a love for what I do and thankfully recipe ideas come fast for me.”

Chef Stuart O'Keeffe, Delalicious, interview, cookbook

The variety of life!

Life as a chef can be very varied and Stuart’s most definetly has been so far. Cooking live on TV, as a private chef for celebrities, working in restaurants and publishing cookbooks are just a few of what his career has entailed so far. What I wanted to know was which is his favourite area to work in and you just have to love his answer!! “My favourite aspect of what I do is definitely doing the live TV segments. You always feel a bit on edge and you’re kinda half shitting yourself with fear of something going wrong. Thankfully it always works out in the end.”

Working and living on the west coast of America is obviously the dream for many but there must be aspects of life, food and culture in Ireland that Stuart misses. Guess what he misses most? “I miss the heartiness of food that we have back home in Ireland. I TRULY miss the breakfasts at home, you just can’t compete with a full Irish. For me, it’s my favourite meal of the day!”

For anyone with travels plans to Stuart’s adopted home in America this summer. Here are his favourite places to eat in West Hollywood. “I love to eat at Cecconi’s (which is also a good star spotting place) and I also do love Jar. Make sure to check these two out.”

What does the future hold for Chef Stuart?

As his food series “Stuart’s Kitchen” with both TV3 and American TV channels are such a success and not to mention a bestselling cookbook, I wondered what the future had in store for Chef Stuart. Would be coming home to start any new ventures in Ireland any time soon? “All those things are always on the cards. I will keep on pitching new ideas for TV shows and would love to do a combo show highlighting Ireland and America in a series. I will be home for The Taste of Dublin event in the Iveagh Gardens this month and am really looking forward to meeting up with everyone during my demo’s. I’m also really excited to reveal that I’m currently at the initial stages for cookbook number two!!”Chef Stuart O'Keeffe, Delalicious, interview So another cookbook to add to the ever expanding collection!! As his first cookbook focuses on the simplicity of cooking with accessible ingredients. I wondered if Stuart would have any tips for someone new to cooking and slightly petrified at the thought of being in the kitchen. Here are his top three tips:

  1. Purchase a cast-iron skillet pan, it will be reward your investment and become your new best friend.
  2. Do your grocery shopping the day before you want to cook. This will make it SO much easier for when you arrive home from work the following day.
  3. Remember, just do one thing at a time.

The Taste of Dublin

Finally, for everyone attending this year’s The Taste of Dublin this is what Stuart has in store for you. “I will be at the Dublin Cookery School interactive cooking stand on Friday and Saturday so please come along and cook with me. I have this wonderful one pot meal recipe for everyone to try that is perfect for midweek dinners. Over on the main stage, I’ll be doing a Californian Inspired Taco recipe.” I love Tacos so I’m very jealous of everyone getting to sample that recipe!!

If you haven’t already bought your ticket to this year’s event then keep an eye on my Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts this week for more details about the chance to win two Sunday tickets!!

Taste Of Dublin, Delalicious, Chef Stuart O'Keeffe

Curried Apricot & Raisin Couscous

Lunch, Salad

Couscous is a perfect option for batch cooking. Cooking in batches at the start of the week or over the weekend is the secret to maintaining a healthy diet or working towards a nutrition goal.

As it is officially summer at home in Ireland, it’s time for salads. Adding some grains to your salad is an easy way to bulk up your lunchbox at work. I have used giant or Israeli couscous here but regular couscous, bulgur wheat, rice or quinoa would be perfect replacements.

Serves 4 as a side.

Couscous, dried fruit, curry, Delalicious

  • 200g couscous grain
  • 400ml boiling hot water
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 dried apricots, diced
  • 2 tbsp raisins
  1. Mix the couscous with the water in a bowl or saucepan. Cover and allow the grain to absorb all the water or cook the grain as per packet instructions.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.Couscous, dried fruit, curry, Delalicious
  3. Taste and if you prefer a stronger curry flavour just add some more.

 

 

 

Summer Salad Jar

Lunch, Salad

Sun, sea and salad – just a few of my favourite things about summer!!

Salad is one of the easiest things to make at home, you can create a really tasty meal super fast and with very few ingredients.

Transporting salads can be notoriously difficult and can end in a sad, soggy mess. Using a jar is not only great for the environment but also the ideal way to create a simple layered salad. So next time, keep a big one aside for your next salad feast.

When using a jar or lunchbox, the key is how you layer the ingredients. I prefer to put the messy ingredients – yes I’m looking at you tomatoes or beetroot at the bottom. Add a layer of grain on top followed by your remaining ingredients. Finish with the delicate leafy greens on top. Keep dressings separate in a small jar or tub and add when you are ready to eat .

Serves 1.

Salad, Lunch, Couscous, Delalicious

  • 1/2 large tomato
  • sea salt
  • 2 tbsp Curried Apricot & Raisin Couscous
  • 1/2 carrot
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • black pepper
  • 50g smoked mackerel
  • 1 large fistful baby leaf spinach
  1. Dice the tomato and mix through a pinch of sea salt.
  2. Spoon the tomato into the bottom of the jar followed by the couscous.Couscous, Summer, Salad, Delalicious
  3. Create carrot ribbons using a vegetable peeler or mandolin.
  4. Add the vinegar and a pinch of black pepper to the carrots and mix well.
  5. Place the carrot ribbons on top of the couscous, followed by the mackerel and top it all with the spinach.
  6. Place in the fridge until ready to eat.