There’s times in our lives when we find ourselves with little to nearly none “me-time” (like when we are taking up a new project, moving house, having a new baby, etc). And most of the times “me-time” is the first that gets chopped off our list because hey, now “we’re ______ ” (insert your current life situation that is preventing you from doing more of those things that make you happy). Lately, I found that cooking (and by “cooking” I mean super simple, very basic recipes that require just a handful of ingredients and a minimum of instructions/ steps) has become my new “me time” and lately my very own “meditation practice”. And what I mean by that is that I intentionally chose to get super creative when it comes to carving out some more me-time. Hence cooking showed up again in my life, yay!
After experimenting with a few different recipes and ingredients, here is what I have arrived to:
First and foremost, you only cook this way when you are NOT hungry (the cooking is done purely for the pleasure of it, cooking for its own sake, NOT for the final product, THAT is just an added bonus)
Second, you got to try on a few different cooking methods that speak to your Soul or to your OWN senses (if you are the visual kind you’d get more kicks out of decorating a cupcake or making a salad and play with colourful fresh ingredients; if you are highly kinaesthetic and experience the world through touch/ feeling, like I do, then I guarantee baking and using your hands to play with the dough will definitely get you going)
Third, once you find out what “does it” for you, repeat the process several times and simply become aware of how you feel while you are doing it, then feel free to add some “extras” to the process such as playing your favourite music on the background (I can’t get enough of this one lately – my muffins & pancakes seem to just love some Justin Timberlake, yes, i know, that sounds funny but its oh-so true!)
My favourite go-to baking thing lately has been the healthy version of the banana-buckwheat muffins (and sometimes when Im in a hurry, pancakes). I eventually figured that if I’m getting an end product might as well enjoy it, hence the recipe that follows. I ended up creating my own version after several (more or less failed attempts) and it goes like this:
Ingredients: (serves 1)
1 ripe banana
1/2 cup of buckwheat flour (honestly, you can wing this and add until you get to a consistency you want)
cinnamon powder & vanilla bean paste (to your own taste) and a pinch of salt
1 cup of plant-based milk (filtered water works too if you don’t have any milk)
1 pinch of baking powder
a tiny bit of coconut oil (otherwise they’ll be super dry and just plainly put, bad:)
mash the banana in a bowl until you get a lumpy paste
turn on the music and play something that gets you all happy and excited (helloooo Justin Timberlake – Take Back The Night)
come back to your recipe & add your flour and the liquid (milk/ water)
mix it up some more
throw in the remaining ingredients; simply taste & add (since it doesn’t have any eggs its safe to taste, and its actually nice)
preheat your oven to 200C
either use a muffin tray or simply put round bits of dough in a plain oven tray to form the pancakes (use a dab of coconut oil to grease the muffin pan or the baking tray, else they’ll get sticky and burnt)
give it about 10-12 minutes checking on them regularly (they do burn really easy, I found out while getting carried away with the music)
Et voila, you can now unleash your visual creative and start arranging your muffins/ pancakes any way you please. I personally love playing with colourful fruit (berries) and flax seeds for a different texture or maple syrup (taste delicious but it gives such a decadent vibe to any plate of pancakes, yawzza!).
What is your favourite thing to make just for the sake of making that?! Care to give it a go with the muffin/ pancakes “meditation”? Drop me a line in the comments and let me know how that went!
Yours in mindfully baking,
Photo by juan manuel Núñez Méndez on Unsplash.