Sunday Eats & Treats

January 26, 2017


You might be familiar with my 'what I ate today' videos on YouTube and I regularly post them on my blog too, but I wanted to write out what exactly I tend to eat on a chill Sunday. I usually do a 30 minute workout in the evening to make myself feel better about the amount of Lotus biscoff I devour on Sundays, but other than that it's a pretty relaxed day.

BREAKFAST

I've been having weetabix with some nuts, seeds and a piece of fruit every single day for the last week so I went back to basics early in the morning and made myself some oatmeal. A warm, filling breakfast instantly boosts my mood and together with pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds, a banana and a tablespoon of maple syrup I can say I thoroughly enjoyed my breakfast meal!


LUNCH


For lunch I wanted to try something new and without following a recipe, I created some tasty sunchoke and sweet potato burger patties. They were pretty easy to make yet I managed to create quite a mess in the kitchen. Fun fact: I (shortly) considered calling my Ebook 'The Messy Kitchen', but then decided that it probably wouldn't be that persuasive. I served the burger patties with lettuce leaves, rasped carrots, tomatoes, avocado, veganaise, ketchup and some shredded vegan cheese. Yum! Sidenote: I ate three of these!


DINNER

I own my mum a big thank you for this lovely dinner she made. Seitan and carrot stew with bulgur, the recipe is actually really simple and the taste is amazing! I might post a full recipe if you'd like me to. Please keep in mind that I snacked on tangerines, almonds, Ikea Kex biscuits and (too) many other tasty food throughout the day. That's all for this food-related post!

Study Tips To Help You Ace Your Exams

January 17, 2017

Whether you're preparing for exams, you're in mid-term or you've just ended your hectic exam period, I thought I'd share my tips on how to get (even) better grades. I'm in no way a professional (as you probably already know), but I wanted to share some advice from student-to-student. Let's get blogging, I mean, studying!

1. Start early and revise during the year so you don't kick off the exam period unprepared.
2. Always read the assigned texts before lectures so you don't end up not reading them due to lack of time during the exams.
3. Take a (huge, enormous, gigantic) large amount of notes during lectures so you've got plenty of information to study for the exam.
4. Take breaks and have days off during the year. Relax and have some me-time!
5. Reduce social media usage, whether it's just scrolling through your Twitter/Facebook/Instagram feed or posting pictures.
6. Talk with your classmates or friends about the course, this will help you to remember things more accurately because they seem more relevant.
7. Get creative: take your mind off of studying and wind down. Maybe you can practice some yoga?
8. Snack on wholefoods and not on junk whilst studying. Almonds, apples, tangerines help you stay awake and increase concentration levels whereas crisps make you feel tired, sluggish and unproductive.
9. Get sporty! Even a twenty minute run increases brain functioning and overall body health.
10. Write your own summaries and don't copy them. Writing them will increase your knowledge about the topic and it'll keep you concentrated.

 11. Write it down! I love making mindmaps during revision and it has been proven that writing down whilst studying equals reading the same text seven times!
12. Plan it out so you don't end up with a lack of time and motivation to study those last few chapters.
13. Sleep! Make sure you get at least seven hours of sleep each night, preferably eight or nine.
14. My study schedule: read, follow lectures, reread lecture notes, study, revise and repeat the parts I don't fully understand yet. Did you know that, if you want to retain the most information, you need to study something five times?
15. Drink enough water whilst studying and don't sip on energy drinks or too much coffee. Though I won't lie, I like having a cup of tea (or three) when I'm studying.

Have you got any other useful tips to help out a fellow student?


Fudgy Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Chips & Biscoff

January 14, 2017

This recipe is an excerpt from my cookbook 'Sweet Simple Cooking' which you can get HERE. I wanted to share this mouth-watering, eye-opening fudgy chocolate chip cake with you as it's my absolute FAVE to bake for friends or for myself (who doesn't love a good chocolate cake with vegan nutella and biscoff or speculoos all for themselves?). Let's get baking!

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups self-raising flour
1 cup unrefined cane sugar
1tsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
1/2tsp salt
2tbsp cocoa powder
1,5 cup rice milk
2tsp vanilla extract
1,5tbsp apple cider vinegar
1,5 chia egg (1,5 tbsp chia to 6tbsp water)
Handful vegan chocolate drops
2tbsp vegan nutella
1/2 cup speculoos



HOW TO:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a round baking tin with non-stick baking paper. Make the chia egg by combining chia seeds with water. Set aside for 10 minutes.

In a bowl, mix the flour, cane sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder. In another bowl, mix rice milk with apple cider vinegar and vanilla extract.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and give it a quick mix. Then add the chia egg and blend until any clumps have disappeared. Lastly, mix in the chocolate drops.

Pour the mixture into the baking tin and let it bake in a preheated oven for 30 minutes.

To make the topping, crumble the speculoos in a mug. Check if the cake is ready by inserting a toothpick, if it comes out clean the cake is ready. Leave it to cool down for 5 minutes. You want to smear on the nutella whilst the cake is still warm so it melts nicely. Sprinkle on the crumble and your cake is ready to be served.


Healthify yourself in 2017

January 10, 2017

 
With New Year's resolutions still fresh in your mind and the recent release of my ebook 'Sweet simple cooking', I thought I would write a post about how to improve your eating habits and overall health. Being healthy and the feeling of being fit have, personally, increased in importance over the last three years. Once I realized the difference my eating habits and fitness routine made to both my physical and psychological health, I decided to improve my lifestyle and make lifelong changes. I know I'm using big words, but it's so important to care about yourself and to invest both time and motivation into creating those lifestyle changes.


1. CREATE A WORKOUT SCHEDULE & STICK TO IT

Trust me when I say that working out wasn't my forte in the past. Although I've always been quite a sporty girl, I thought working out was a complete waste of time as the only one who had to put up with my body was me. But, working out isn't just about feeling and looking fit, it's about having a better night's sleep, speeding up your metabolism, challenging your body and improving your eating habits

I try to work out at least three timesa week, preferably four, for 40 minutes but I make sure not to overexercise as I've been through a phase of exercising seven days a week and thus exhausting my body until it (nearly) shut down. As I'm currently training for a half marathon, it's easy for me to stay motivated. I really want to reach my goal which makes exercising a lot more fun. Try to set a goal and work towards it. This can be a set distance you want to run, a certain amount of kgs you want to lift or just improving the way your body feels whilst exercising.

2. EAT MORE & DON'T STARVE YOURSELF
 
I'm not lying when I say that some of my portion sizes are huge compared to my relatively tiny body. As I'm only eating plantbased foods, which are much lower in calories than animal derived foods, I can eat more and still not gain weight. The only weight gain I've recently experienced is due to muscle gain. Most people have the new year's resolution to 'lose weight' translating to 'starving myself' which isn't a healthy mindset. If you want to lose weight, try to exercise more, eat more plant foods, less animal derived products and less sweets. Starving yourself will most likely lead to binge eating and isn't a long-term solution for weightloss. Diets don't work, a change of lifestyle, on the other hand, does work

3. DRINK MORE WATER & HYDRATE YOUR BODY

Drinking more water has an endless list of benefits, as it clears your skin, strengthens your hair and nails, cures headaches, keeps your energy levels up, fights bloating, aids in digestion etcetera. I try to drink at least 1,5 litres a day (more if I'm exercising that day) and make sure to drink it before my meals. I'm not saying I never overeat when I drink before I eat, but it makes me feel less hungry almost instantly which leads to eating (a little bit) less.


4. A NUTRITIOUS START: GET YOUR BREAKFAST GAME ON

Something most people skip when creating better daily routines, is breakfast. If you start your day with a nutritious meal to keep your energy levels up, you're most likely in a mindset that wants you to not ruin the progress you just made and, consequently, your other meals will be healthier too. Don't skip breakfast, but have a large meal in the morning, a slightly smaller lunch and an even smaller dinner. Also, don't forget to snack in between meals. I tend to have a handful of almonds, an apple or tangerines and a less healthy Lotus biscoff during the day. 

5. BALANCE IS KEY (AND KIND OF THE SOLUTION FOR EVERYTHING)

As I mentioned before, having balanced meals and workout plans are key to creating a healthy lifestyle. Eat healthy most of the time, but allow yourself to have a snack now and then. That's exactly why diets don't work, because you're forcing yourself to do something that isn't natural. Unless it's a lifestyle change, it's most likely not going to lead you to living a healthier life.

6. WALK MORE & GET OUTSIDE

I try to walk for at least 30 minutes every day to get my heart rate up and get some fresh air in my lungs. Sometimes thirty minutes of walking may seem like an incredible waste of precious time, but the benefits of those minutes most definitely outweight the time it takes. It increases your energy, reduces stress and provides better sleeping patterns. So get moving!

What are your tips for improving your lifestyle in 2017 and making this year all about treating yourself better?


SWEET SIMPLE COOKING IS OUT NOW! BUY HERE

My Resolutions for 2017

January 1, 2017


Last year, I promised myself to get fitter and to work out more often. That's exactly what I did in 2016 and despite having had surgery twice and going through three months of recovery, I actually managed to run a solid 15K once. I'm still building up to my half marathon, but I'm getting there slowly but surely. This year's resolution? Probably beating my PR and running 21K. I'm still working on cutting down sugary foods, but I love the occasional gingerbread biscuit or chocolate pie (all vegan, of course).

I managed to get pretty good grades which made me blog even less. Oh how often I've wished for a personal photographer to shoot my outfits in the streets of my city. Instead I've been traveling to lectures or finding ways to spice up my oatmeal game. Maybe I'll manage to blog more often next year? Fingers crossed.

The other big goal I've set is to visit Great Britain in 2017. Edinbrough is the city I've been wanting to visit for ages and I'm hopefully going to turn my dreams into plans. I would love to be an exchange student in England and study in a different country for a semester. These are my realistic resolutions for 2017, what are yours?:

· Run 21K aka a half marathon ·
· Cut down my intake of sugary foods ·
· Explore Great Britain and go on Erasmus·
 · The usual 'upgrade my blogging game' ·
· Take things as they come and accept them as they are ·
· Introduce more people to a plantbased lifestyle for themselves, the animals and the environment ·
· Publish my first cookbook 'Sweet Simple Cooking' ·
·  Finish writing a novel (first chapter on Wattpad fyi) ·