Sunday, 17 February 2019

How to make Banana Bread

For the love of bananas, recently I discovered another way to enjoy them. I learnt how to make banana bread. I've always wanted to learn to bake but shied away due to the fact that I did not have an electric mixer and whatnots. The good thing about this recipe is that I get to bake without all those sophisticated stuff. Literally, all I need to do is put them all in a bowl and stir, pour the dough in the baking tin and toss in the oven. That's it. that's literally it.

Well, if you do not believe me or want more details like portions and co, then keep reading.

List of ingredients
1. 2 over ripe bananas
2. 2 eggs
3. 80g melted butter or margarine
4. 40g sugar (white sugar, coconut sugar)
5. 1/4 teaspoon of Vanilla extract
6. 2 tablespoons of milk
7. 80g flour
8. 1 tablespoon Baking powder
9. 1 teaspoon Baking soda
10. 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
11. 1/2 teaspoon cinammon

How to Make Banana Bread

1. Mash your bananas in a mixing bowl. You can use a fork. This should be easy if your bananas are over ripe.

2. Add 2 eggs to mashed bananas and beat

3. Add melted butter (seriously discovering that melted butter actually works revolutionalised my thinking about baking. I always stayed away from baking due to the time and energy needed to cream butter without an electric mixer)

4. Add vanilla extract and milk. Stir.

5. Add sieved sugar and stir. I discovered coconut sugar recently and it has been such an amazing ingredient. It has a special sweet taste and colours whatever you use it in brown. I use both white sugar and coconut sugar just so my coconut sugar can last.

6. Add sieved flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon. Stir all. I use a spatula to stir

7. Add raisins or nuts (optional)

Your dough is ready
8. Pour into your prepared baking tin. I prepare my tin by rubbing some butter on all inner surfaces of the tin and spreading flour to touch all corners of the tin.

9. Preheat oven to 165 degrees and place tin at the lower cadre of oven.

10. Bring out after 35 mins and stick a toothpick in it to make sure it is dry.
If dry, your banana bread/cake is ready.

Will love to hear your comments about this recipe. Let’s discuss below. Cheers.
Did you miss my Val's day post? Click here to read.
Radiant ~ February 2019

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Valentine's Day Surprise Goes Bad

Valentine’s Day Surprise Goes Bad...

...Well, almost.

Feeling all lovey-dovey, as this is a season of love, my husband who seldom concerns himself with the kitchen affairs decided to make me breakfast. It was to be a sumptuous yamaritta and fried eggs. Unfortunately, it almost ended in a burnt down house.

So I heard my name loudly as I was preparing for work and I knew instantly there was trouble. I ran to meet him
 in the kitchen, already panicked.

The frying pan was ablaze. Red hot flame fuelling out. Apparently he had let the oil get too hot.

You see why male children should be allowed to enter the kitchen more often.

I knew what I had to do. So I got a lid to cover the pan and turned off the cooker. The fire stopped immediately.

I wondered what would have happened if I had left the house earlier.

"What would you have done?", I asked

"I was going to throw it out the window", he said smiling mischievously.

"What! You would have set the entire compound on fire".

All I could say was thank you Jesus that I was delayed. I could not imagine what would have happened if I was not there and he threw out the pan of fire or didn't throw it.

Val’s day wasn’t ruined eventually. I came back home to a box of chocolate pizza, bottle of red wine and customised card from my darling husband. 

Radiant ~ February 2019. Have you seen my previous post? Please click here to read the poem. Watch out for my next post this coming Sunday about how I make Banana bread as in the above picture. Happy Val's day.

Sunday, 10 February 2019

My still voice - a diminishing hexaverse

Bid me write a poem
For my heart boils up
Wisdom, sense and skill
Emotions trapped in
Everyday’s business

Bid me to sing
Those songs unsung
Lying in books
iPad and phone

For a soul
yearns to hear
my still voice

In word
In song


Did you notice the tapering structure of the poem?
It starts with a stanza of 5 lines made of 5 syllables each, then a 4-line stanza of 4 syllables each, down to one stanza of one syllable.

This type of poem is called a Diminishing Hexaverse or Diminished Hexaverse.

Please share your comments on what you think of the poem. Thanks

Radiant ~ February 2019

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

How to make Nigerian okra soup with minimal resources

We Nigerians in diaspora have to learn how to use what we have to get what we want. We long for Nigerian food, but many times, getting Nigerian foodstuff can be nose-racking. We are either challenged by availability, accessibility, cost or quality. Instead of ugu (pumpkin) leaves, you will have to make do with spinach as fresh ugu is very rare. More so, the ground crayfish you will buy here will be nothing compared to crayfish in Nigeria. The process of packaging it for commerce makes it lose its real taste.
So you have all these challenges plus the fact that you can't afford to spend all your time in the kitchen boiling shaki (beef tripe) and kpomo (cowskin). And yet you can't be eating sandwiches every day. Well, just maybe there is a way to make your soup with the least requirements and still have it tasting as nice. I'm about to show you that with Okra soup.

Basic ingredients in Nigerian Okra soup

The basic ingredients in every Nigerian soup are palm oil, pepper, fish (crayfish/stock fish/dry fish/smoked fish/fresh fish) and meat. The major difference between the soups are the types of leaves used. Even if the only fish you can get is ground crayfish, your soup will taste as nice as made in Nigeria. Here is a list of the ingredients you will be needing to make your Nigerian okra soup.

Palm oil (available in big Asian/African/Caribbean stores)
Beef/goat meat/any meat
Okra (available in most Asian/African/Caribbean grocery shops)
Any leafy vegetable (spinach, ugu, bitter leaf)
Peppers (scotch bonnet or chilli, red bell peppers )
Ground Crayfish (you just have to have brought this one from Nigeria or try the ones in African grocery shops or do without)
Seasoning cube
Garlic and ginger (fresh or powder)

How To Make Nigerian Okra Soup
1. Boil your meat with onions, salt, garlic, ginger and seasoning cube.
2. Cut your pepper and onions. Chop your vegetables (spinach will do) and dice your okra.
3. Place your diced okra in a bowl and stir it for 5 mins or till you see it drawing, and set aside.
4. Place an empty pot on the fire, pour a little palm oil, put your onions and cut peppers, fry for 2 minutes.
5. Add the meat and stock, ground crayfish, ground chilli and simmer for 2 minutes.
6. Add salt to taste.
7. Add the okra, stir, cover and allow to simmer for 2 minutes.
8. Add chopped spinach. Not too much spinach though, as this is okra soup and not spinach soup. Too much spinach makes the soup watery. The essence of okra soup is that it should draw. So spinach should be minimal. Also, the smaller you cut your okra, the greater potential it has to draw. Some even grate it, but I find it too stressful to do.
9. Simmer for 30 secs and turn off the heat.

Voila! Food is ready to be served with any starch- Garri, Semolina, Poundo yam, Oatmeal, Ugali etc which you can also get from the A/A/C shops.

Who said you can't eat Nigerian food in the UK?

Lemme hear your thoughts. How do you eke out a good Nigerian meal with minimal resources?

Radiant ~ February 2019

Monday, 28 January 2019

The Imperative of the Presence of God

Sunday service sermon
@ The King’s Glory Centre, King’s Lynn

Preacher - Pastor Blessing

The presence of God is tangible and can be sort, acquired, retained and lost. If you must lose anything, do not lose the Presence of God.

Gen. 39:1-2 Joseph was a slave but became prosperous because God was with him. Without God's presence, you are limited, vulnerable, exposed.

Acts 12:1-20 Peter's chains fell off at the presence of God. There are habits people are struggling with. The prescription is to seek the presence of God. In life there are gates - dreams you have, ambitions etc. If you have the presence of God those gates will open just like the iron gate opened on its own due to the presence of God around Peter. But why did he allow the angel depart? When he eventually got to his people the door didn't open; he kept knocking. Where the presence of God is absent, frustration is inevitable.

Ps. 16:11The path of life is in the presence of God. There is fullnes of joy and pleasures where there is God's presence.

The presence of God is never to be assumed. Luke 2:46 It is so fragile that even the one who carries it may not know that it has departed. Jesus' parents went a day's journey without Him but did not know. Same way a lot of Christians live their lives without God's presence. A church can be functional without God's presence. It took Mary and Joseph 3 days to find him.

Why do we rush out of our homes without God's presence? We do not do this because we believe we can do it on our own. We can get victory over the day before we step out. The presence of God is to be sought diligently.

Jer.29:13 A man carrying the presence of God is loaded with power. Joseph had it in the prison and in the palace. If you have the presence of God in your career you'll find out that you're just favoured. While others practised catwalk, Esther sought God's presence and it brought her favour before the king. David never prayed to be king; all he longed after was for God's heart.

Heb. 5:7 Jesus sought God's presence with strong crying and tears. Without the presence of God we are compelled to go through the same process that mortal men go through. The presence of God is the lubrication of life and must be sought with desperation.

Radiant ~ January 2019
Feel free to share your thoughts on this topic.