Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Treats for the arduous journey, happy 2015!

Happy 2015!

If you're anything like me, you're probably running behind on your to-do errands, and that resolution list should definitely be retitled '2016' - by the time I get to it.

But that's ok.

It's alright to take some time to catch your breath, to relish the threshold of crossing into a brand new year.
> Ringing in the year with cake pops

I've been catching up on some reading over the holidays, and reminded that the essence of anything we do is really to be in the moment.

Each step is there for a reason, to make a difference.
Savor it. And then move on.

Starting a whole new set of 365 days is a big deal, so let's take a little time out to let that sink in. It'll refresh and refocus us, and we'll get to what we need to do in just the right time.

I'm still working on my 2015 Inspiration List for now.

This is by no means a rattling of resolutions, but really things that I want to remind myself to do as I barrel into the year.

I'd probably fail at half of them, and forget the other half.

But I do find myself needing inspiration and reminders, especially as the year chugs along.

It's easy to get swept up in things we're doing, work, obligations and even fun.

I've learnt over the years, that it helps to have a couple of little lights to point us back to path along the way, remind us of what it is we WANT our year to be like.

5 things on my Inspiration List:
1) Be grateful
2) Live healthily
3) Make a difference
4) Enjoy what I'm doing/baking
5) Feel joy about something - everyday

It's still a work in progress, but this is where I'm at for now.

I'll continue refining it along the next 358 days.

And as you work on your lists and resolutions, I know you're gonna be needing a bit of encouragement.

Here are 5 little treats to keep on hand for the arduous journey ;)


These little bites are crunchy and light, perfect with some milk or cocoa. And the best part? The dough can be made ahead, so you're never left without.  

And they're just perfect for packing into little bags to share with a fellow resolution-maker.

> Recipe from Martha Stewart

Ombre swirl cookies


Mix it up with any sort of herbs you like, this recipe from Bon Appetit brings out a nice savory fragrance balanced by a barely-weighty shortbread. And if you don't have caraway seeds, toasted black sesame seeds work perfectly well too, adding a pinch of earthiness.

More shortbread recipes:
Chocolate chip shortbread
Chocolate-almond sables - shortbread cookies


One of my fave snacks, just can't get enough of these. Swap the almonds out for any other nuts you prefer. These sables have such a chocolately fragrance, I make them jumbo for indulgence, but they work just as well in teeny bites.

> How to make these delectable beauties
> Double chocolate cookies - equally irresistible!


I love making cookies either extra large for giant yumness, or bite-sized poppers - so easy to eat, no crumbs, no fuss. These (recipe here) go wonderfully with a hot cup of tea, or if you have milky chai on hand - even better!

> Make some Chai Granola to go along


These are dangerous. They carry a hint of the Asian palm sugar (gula melaka), settling subtly and making merry with its bowl mates. You could eat a whole jarful of this without feeling anything close to sick. So addictive. Good thing they're packed with oats, nuts and coconut - so it's good for us!

> Make your own gula melaka granola

> More granola recipes:
   - Chai Honey
   - Deep Chocolate

These are all bites that keep well so have them handy in a jar, and good luck with your list-making and inspiration in the new year ahead!