Creamy Chai Spiced Overnight Oats

Breakfast is a very important meal.  Getting everyone out the door in the mornings can be a challenge and the last thing I want to do is skip breakfast or pick up an unhealthy option while I am out and about.

Chai Spice combines the flavors of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves and nutmeg.  It is the perfect way to add a boost of flavor to your morning oats.

Overnight Oats are a great addition to the grab & go lifestyle.  They are easy to assemble making it easy to prepare 4-5 servings at once.  They will keep well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  This is a huge time saver!

Most recipes just have you add your ingredients to a bowl or jar, stir and place in the fridge overnight.  Then the next day, you can add your toppings and get your day started.

Note:  Chia seeds have a gritty texture.  Use a spice grinder to grind the chia seeds with the oats and spices.  This process will to reduce the gritty texture and result in creamy Overnight Oats.

First, add 1/4 cup of Old Fashioned Oats to a spice grinder along with 1-1/2 teaspoons of Chia Seeds and 3/4 teaspoon of Chai Spice.  Then pulse the oat mixture in the spice grinder about 12 times until the mixture has a consistency of sand.

 

 

Next, transfer the oat mixture from the spice grinder to a small mixing bowl. Add 1/4 cup Non-fat Vanilla Greek Yogurt, 1/3 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk, a pinch of Kosher Salt, 1 packet of Splenda and 1 teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar.

Stir well to combine all the ingredients.  The mixture will be very creamy.

Chai Spiced Oats Mixed Up

Transfer the ingredients to a jar or storage container and place your container in the fridge overnight.  The Oats will soften and the Chia Seeds will take on a chewy and gelatinous texture.

In the morning, grab your container and add your favorite toppings.  For this recipe, try topping your Overnight Oats with a thin layer of Non-Fat Vanilla Greek Yogurt, 1 teaspoon of No-Sugar Added Peach Preserves and a few Blueberries.

Creamy Chai Spiced Oats with Peach Blueberry Topping

Enjoy!

Creamy Chai Spiced Overnight Oats

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Easy recipe to make Chai Spiced Overnight Oats that are creamy and delicious.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Chia Seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon Chai Spice
  • 1/3 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1/4 cup Non-fat Vanilla Greek Yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 packet of Splenda
  • pinch Kosher Salt

If you choose to skip the step to grind the oats, chia seeds and spices, just place all ingredients in the bowl and reduce the amount of Unsweetened Almond Milk to 1/4 Cup.

Directions

  1. Add the Oats, Chia Seeds and Chai Spice to spice grinder. Pulse 12 times.
  2. Transfer oat mixture to a small mixing bowl.
  3. Add Unsweetened Almond Milk, Non-fat Vanilla Greek Yogurt, Apple Cider Vinegar, Splenda and Salt.
  4. Stir until all ingredients are combined.
  5. Transfer to a storage container and place in the fridge to chill overnight.
  6. Top with your toppings of choice. I recommend a thin layer of yogurt and low sugar fruit preserves.

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Polish Easter Bread Rolls

Putting A Twist on Tradition – Polish Easter Bread Rolls

It’s that time of year..  Spring is in full bloom and the Easter celebrations are in full force.  

Even with the hustle and bustle of the “everyday” routine, making time to maintain traditions is really important to my family.  

Making Polish Easter Bread is a family favorite.  It’s an all day event because we make several batches. 

Last year I posted my take on the “family recipe”, “Embracing In-Law Family Traditions = Polish Easter Bread”

This year I decided to put a twist on tradition and make Polish Easter Bread Rolls.     They were so cute….I  wish I had thought of this sooner!

Enjoy!

Denise

Polish Easter Bread Rolls

Polish Easter Bread Rolls

1 Batch of Polish Easter Bread Dough

Follow instructions for the making the bread with the following exceptions:

  • Spray cupcake pans with cooking spray.  Set aside.
  • Follow instructions for Polish Easter Bread Recipe.
  • Instead of dividing dough into 6 mini-loaves, divide into 48 rolls.
  • Place rolls into the cupcake pans for the second rise.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Saffron Tea for Two

Recently, I went to my local Mediterranean store to buy saffron.

The store owner told me that I had to try it in my tea. She explained the process to me.

Below is my take on the recipe…

It is so worth the splurge!

Next time you buy saffron, be sure to treat yourself to this beverage.

Enjoy!

Denise

Saffron Tea

Saffron Tea for Two

2 Cups of Boiling Water
2 Green Tea Bags
Pinch Saffron

  • Place tea bags and saffron in your tea filter.

Saffron Tea

Saffron Tea

    • Pour boiling water over tea bags/saffron.Cover and steep 3-5 minutes.

Saffron Tea

  • Serve (adding your favorite sweetener).

Yum!

Cardamom Waffles {Christmas Breakfast}

Why not spice up your Christmas breakfast with cardamom?

Every year my family looks forward to Christmas waffles. I have tried several recipes over the years (some more complicated than others). On holiday mornings, simple recipes packed with flavor are my ticket to getting breakfast on the table with no stress.

So, for this recipe, I decided to adapt a classic waffle recipe using Bisquick.

We did a “test run” this past weekend…

Cardamom is known as being the “queen of spices”. These Cardamom Waffles are now going to rule our Christmas breakfast every year…

We found that if you put 1/2 cup of the waffle batter onto the center of a belgium waffle maker, the waffles look like snowflakes.

Have a great holiday! Enjoy!

Denise

Cardamom Waffles

Cardamom Waffles

Makes 5 Belgium Waffles

2 cups Bisquick Baking Mix

1-1/3 cups Milk

2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil

1 Egg

1 tablespoon Cardamom

  • Heat your waffle iron according to your manufacturer instructions.
  • Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.

Cardamom Waffles Batter

  • Spray your waffle iron with cooking spray.
  • Place 1/2 cup of waffle batter onto the center of the waffle iron.

Cardamom Waffles

  • Close waffle iron and steam according to your manufacturer instructions.

Cardamom Waffles

  •  Repeat with remaining batter.

Tres Leches Vanilla Steamer

Tres Leches Vanilla Steamer

“Baby, it’s cold outside…”

The holiday season can get very hectic.   Don’t forget to take time to soak in the holidays memories….

Make yourself a nice warm drink and take time for you. You deserve it!

Here is my take on my son’s favorite vanilla steamer.

Of course, I just had to add some Latina flair by using Tres Leches (3 milks).   In fact it was so good that somehow some of the foam ended up in my espresso.

Stay warm.  Enjoy!

Denise

Tres Leches Vanilla Steamer

Yields 4-6 servings

12 oz can Evaporated Milk

1-1/2 cups Milk (I used 2%)

4 tablespoons Sweetened Condensed Milk

1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

  • Pour all ingredients into a large glass measuring cup. Stir to combine.
  • Steam the milk according to your espresso makers directions. (If you don’t have an espresso maker, you can easily froth milk with just a microwave and a jar.
  • Pour into serving cups and sprinkle some freshly grated nutmeg on top.
  • Serve immediately.
Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

Coo Coo for Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

A few weeks ago, I was browsing the grocery store at lunch time.     A chocolate display caught my eye….in particular.. ground cocoa beans.   I’ve been reading recently about the health benefits of cocoa beans. 

They are very tasty…not as bitter as I expected them to be….and the flavor seemed to linger.   Pure chocolate flavor at its best without added sugar…. 

Hmmm…Creative Cooking Opportunity…

The Versatile Vanilla series was so much fun.  Chocolate is next !

Below is my recipe that is inspired by Caribbean flavors…chocolate, bananas, coconut, rum and spices.

Enjoy!

Denise

Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

Yield:  12 Muffins

Ingredients

1 cup All-Purpose Flour

3/4 cup Whole Wheat Flour

2 teaspoons Baking Powder

1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda

1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon Cardamom

1/2 teaspoon Salt

2 Bananas (very ripe)

1/2 cup Sweetened Flaked Coconut

3/4 cup Sugar

1/3 cup Vegetable Oil

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon Rum extract

1/2 teaspoon Coconut extract

1/3 cup Ground Cocoa Beans

Instructions

  • Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a muffin tin and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, use a whisk to combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • In a large bowl, add oil, eggs, bananas, coconut, sugar, rum extract and coconut extract.  Use a mixer to blend ingredients.

Preparing Caribbean Cocoa Beans Muffins

  • Add dry ingredients to banana mixture.  Mix well.

Preparing Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

  • Stir in the ground cocoa beans.

Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins Preparation

  • Divide batter between the 12 muffin cups.

Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins Prep

  • Bake for 18-20 minutes (until cake test comes out clean).
  • Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes.

Caribbean Cocoa Bean Muffins

Embracing In-Law Family Traditions – Polish Easter Bread

I first met my In-Law family during the Easter holiday (about 15 years ago). 

Their Easter food traditions revolve around the love of Kielbasi with sauerkraut (it has to be “white kielbasi”…), Polish Easter Bread and Pound Cake.  

After we got married, I started asking for a copy of the recipe so that I could make Polish Easter Bread for my husband.  It took a few years to get a copy from my sister-in-law.   It was well worth the wait…  The first time that I made this (with the help of another sister-in-law), we actually forgot to add the eggs (ha ha).  It was still very good.

Over the years, I’ve adapted the recipe and have re-written it so that non-bread makers can easily make it too.  Of course, I had to add some spice (Cinnamon was an obvious choice)..

The holidays are definitely a time to embrace cultural traditions.  It may be a personal family tradition, an in-law tradition or one that has evolved over time by the blending of the two families (and cultures)….

Enjoy your Easter Holiday!

Denise

 

 

Gypsy World Spice Cafe Recipe – Polish Easter Bread

Yields:  3 loaves (or 6 mini-loaves)

Ingredients:

1-1/2 cups Sugar

1 teaspoon Salt

2 cups Milk

2 sticks Butter

6 eggs (3 whole, 3 yolks)

1 cup Raisins

1 cup Golden Raisins

3 packets of Dry Active Yeast (Rapid Rise)

9 cups flour, plus more as needed (I blend 1/2 white flour with 1/2 white-wheat flour)

1 tablespoon Cinnamon, divided

Instructions

  • Measure your flour into a bowl and set aside.  
  • In a separate bowl, toss raisins with 2 teaspoons of cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of flour; set aside.

  •  Heat sugar, milk, salt and butter in a saucepan over medium heat.  Do not bring to a boil.  Set aside to cool to 105-110 degrees (about 30 minutes).
  • Pour this mixture into a large bowl.  Add yeast and stir until yeast has dissolved.

  • Add 2 cups of flour to yeast mixture.  Mix until incorporated.  Cover with plastic wrap and a clean dish towel.
  • Put this bowl in the oven* to proof for at least 15 minutes. When you take the bowl out of the oven, you will see that the yeast has started to work.  The mixture will be kind of foamy.
  • Add 4 cups of flour, one cup at a time (mixing well between each cup of flour).  
  • Mix in the raisins, eggs and remaining 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.  The dough will be sticky but workable.

  • Turn the sticky dough mixture out onto a lightly floured work surface.
  • Knead the dough for 10-15 minutes.  You will probably need to add another 2-3 cups of flour (one sprinkle at a time).  You do not want the dough to get flakey (very few raisins should fall out).  Only add enough flour to get the dough smooth and elastic.
  • Place the dough into a lightly greased bowl.  Turn to coat the dough.  Place the bowl in the oven* and let rise until double (for about 1-2 hours).

  • Punch the dough down and divide into 3 equal portions for regular sized loaves (6 equal portion for mini-loaves).
  • Shape and put into greased loaf pans.  Cover with plastic wrap and clean dish towel.  Let rise for 30-60 minutes.

 

  • Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  If needed, cover with aluminum foil during the last 5-10 minutes to prevent over-browning.

 

*Notes: 

Oven Proofing Temperature Instructions

  • If you have an electric oven, heat it at 350 degrees for 1 minute and then shut it off.
  • If you have a gas oven, the pilot light will have the oven warmed to the appropriate temperature.

Link to WikiHow on Kneading Bread

http://www.wikihow.com/Knead-Dough

Gypsy Spiced Frittata

Recently, I have become a huge fan of making frittatas.

Not only is the technique easy, you can easily swap out the veggies for whatever flavors you like.  

It starts on the stove top and finishes off under the broiler.  

I like to top the frittata with a small amount of cheese for flavor, texture and color.  I love how it browns under the broiler!

Serve with a nice salad and you are set for a nice brunch or dinner entrée.

Enjoy!

 

 

 Gypsy World Spice Cafe Recipe – Gypsy Spiced Frittata

Yield:  4-6 Servings

8 Eggs
1 teaspoon of your favorite herb blend ( I use my own custom blend)
1/2 cup Onion, chopped
1/4 cup Pancetta, chopped
2 small Red-skinned Potatoes, quartered and thinly sliced
1 clove Garlic, minced
4 cups Baby Spinach
4 oz. Baby Bella Mushrooms, sliced
3/4-1 teaspoon Hot Paprika (depending on level of heat you like)
Salt & Pepper
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 tablespoon Butter
1/8 cup shredded part-skim Mozzarella

  1. Add eggs, herb blend, salt and pepper to a large bowl.
  2. Whisk to combine. Set aside.
  3. Heat oven broiler to high.
  4. In a large frying pan (that is oven-proof), melt butter with olive oil over medium-high heat.
  5. Sauté pancetta, potatoes, and onions until veggies tender (about 5 minutes).
  6. Add garlic, mushrooms, and spinach. Cook another 3-5 minutes until spinach has wilted. 
  7. Season to taste salt, pepper and hot paprika.
  8. Pour egg mixture onto veggie mixture.
  9. Reduce heat to low and cook until edges or pan are firm (3-4 minutes). 
  10. Sprinkle with mozzarella.
  11. Place under the broiler for 3 minutes or until eggs are set and cheese is melted (and lightly browned).

 

Cardamom Coffee Cake Cupcakes

Last week I wanted to make cupcakes for someone special in my life that is going through one of life’s challenges. This special person loves coffee cake and used to make it for our little guy. As a toddler, he would even want to call her…just to ask her to make it for him… Of course, she did… So, we decided to make coffee cake cupcakes for her.

Below is my take on the classic coffee cake. I opted to spice things up with Cardamom. Cardamom pairs well with coffee (and that is what coffee cake is supposed to do).

Enjoy!

Gypsy World Spice Cafe Recipe – Cardamom Coffee Cupcakes

Yield: 24 cupcakes

1/2 cup Butter, softened

1/2 cup Shortening

2 cups Sugar, divided

4 Eggs, separated

1 tablespoon Vanilla extract

1 cup Milk

3 cups Flour

1 tablespoon Baking Powder

1/2 teaspoon Salt

1 teaspoon Cinnamon, divided

1-1/2 teaspoons Cardamom, divided

1 tablespoon unsweetened Cocoa Powder

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Line cupcake pans with paper cupcake liners.
  • In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of the sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of the cardamom, 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon and the unsweetened cocoa powder.
  • In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and shortening until pale and fluffy.
  • Add egg yolks, 1-1/2 cups of the sugar and vanilla extract.
  • Mix to combine, scraping down sides as necessary.
  • In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until you have soft peaks.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon of cardamom.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in thirds, alternating with the milk. Mixing well with each time.
  • Fold the beaten egg whites into the butter mixture.
  • Fill the cupcake pan halfway with the batter.
  • Sprinkle the batter with of the sugar mixture.
  • Fill the cupcake pan with remaining batter (until 2/3 full).
  • Sprinkle the batter with remaining sugar mixture.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Recipe – Harvest Oats

I really love oatmeal….basically eat it just about everyday for breakfast.  

This is a recipe that I developed last year to create a Fall flavored oatmeal.     This recipe utilizes Steel Cut Oats (sometimes referred to as Irish Oatmeal).   Steel Cut Oats are coarser in texture than rolled oats as the oat kernels are only cut 2-3 times.   Traditional oatmel is “rolled”. 

You will see in the below recipe, that the cooking time for Steel Cut Oats is much longer than your everyday oats.   Leftovers keep for several days in the fridge…. just pop it in the microwave for a minute or two to warm it up…

The extra effort is definitely worth it!  

 

 

Gypsy World Spice Cafe Recipe – Harvest Oats 

Yield:  4 Servings

3-1/2 cups water

1/2 cup apple cider

1 cup steel cut oats

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 apple finely chopped

1/3 cup dark raisins

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

6 packets of Splenda (or the sugar equivalent)

salt

maple syrup

  1. Bring apple cider and water to a boil in a medium pot.
  2. Add pumpkin puree, chopped apples, raisins, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, dash of salt, Splenda to the water/cider.  Stir to combine ingredients.
  3. Lower the temperature to a low and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Serve with maple syrup of your choice.

 

Blogger’s Comments:  

I love this recipe.  It is a family favorite and it  is the only way my oldest son will eat oatmeal.  If you want, you can add a dash of vanilla or substitute the raisins for dried cranberries.

If it is too time-consuming, you can google information about steel cut oats to find instructions to either pre-soak your steel cut oats overnight or cook them in a slow cooker overnight.  Both methods are great time savers.