Pimp My Recipe

IMG_3113I had one of those cold sweat, panic, holy cr** moments today where I really did feel my heart pumping. I spoke to my father on Skype and he told me he’d received a letter from the Law Society of Scotland advising me that I was now officially, no longer entitled to practise Scots law. I’m not quite sure why I had that moment of panic. Anyway, I did. It lasted all of 2 seconds 🙂 It’s funny when chapters officially come to an end in your life. I never wanted to be a lawyer. I kept thinking that the more promotions I got, the better it would be. It never was though; not even when I became a partner! I was one of those kids, a victim of my intellect and the system. I was bright and as such, pushed to go to university and become a lawyer. All I ever wanted to do though was cook. Any time I suggested that I cook, I was told by my mother to get my law degree and then I could do what I wanted. When you’re in the system though, it’s so difficult to get out. So now, as a mother, when my 10 year old tells me she wants to be a country western singer, I tell her “go for it”. “What can I do to help?” “Shall we go to Nashville?”. When my sport mad 14 year old gets myself or my husband up at 5.30 to go to Crossfit, or drags us to the gym or out for a cycle or a run in the evenings, we say “sure, let’s go” and when my little one wants to dance, I ask her “what songs shall I put on for you?” When she tells me she doesn’t want to learn her letters and numbers, I say “no problem”. How hard do you think it is for a mother with 2 degrees (one being a law degree) and a post grad to accept that her child needs learning support. She’s one of the few kids in her year who can’t write all of her letters and numbers. Is she stupid. Absolutely and categorically, not. She’s disinterested. She’s rather dance and boy can she move. Why is everyone expected to go through the system. We’re all different.  So what’s this got to do with food……..nothing apart from the fact that I wanted to be a chef and not a lawyer….anyway……..

It’s been a funny few days. We had a power cut all day Thursday. I was grateful for my chopped up veggies in the fridge and was able to throw together a stir fry by candlelight. It was fun and I loved watching Quinn trying to work out what she was eating 🙂 She had kale and callalloo and had no idea 🙂 Maybe we should practise eating in the dark as a way of encouraging children to eat their greens. We then had an evening reading books by torchlight.

I spent 2 1/2 hours at the horses on Friday morning and then in the afternoon, we baked and went for a cycle. Okay, Dane and Eva cycled and I ran with Quinn who was in the running buggy. I was blowing out of my backside. It was about 90 degrees and let’s just say, I wasn’t quite in the mood for my gym visit later that evening, but hey, I went. Got that music on and away I went. I find that when I draw myself up an agenda, I stick to it. It’s not always out of want though and more out of the fact that I have something to be accountable to even if it is just a “to do” list. Try it for yourself. You feel really guilty if you miss something!

On Saturday, I did my Crossfit retest and took 2 minutes  and 10 seconds off of my time for a circuit of 60 pull ups, 60 press ups, 60 sit ups and 60 squats. Not too shabby if I say so myself.  My measurements were interesting. My biceps, chest and bum increased whilst my waist and thighs reduced. Conclusion…..I’m getting more muscular. Is this a good thing? Well actually, I think it is. From what I’ve read, the average 30 to 35 year old will experience a 25% decline in his or her muscle strength and tone by the age of 70.  I’m north of 40 and gaining muscle and strength! Aerobic exercise is not enough to counteract the decline. You need to be doing strength work.  I’m a vain git and I now think ahead to where I want to be and how I want to be as I age. I don’t want to be some old granny with a handbag full of prescription drugs whinging to old Jessie about my back pain or the aches in my hips as I stick my tongue under my dentures. I want to be like Madonna (physically) but without the facial aid and gloves. I’m proud of my pull up calluses although they really hurt today. Thank goodness for bees wax!

 I’ve attached a link to an interesting read from Forbes.


Now it’s confession time……….I didn’t reduce my carbs as I said I would. In fact, I’ve been a bit naughty and had a little maple syrup in my Hello Dolly bars. As of tomorrow, I’ll be reducing the carbs. See. No-one is perfect. I’ll keep you posted.

Have you heard of the TV program “Pimp My Ride”? Well this is “Pimp My Recipe”. I took a recipe I had for Hello Dolly Bars  which was full of sugar and condensed milk and I healthified it. These are to die for. Please let me know what you think of them. I’d love some feedback!

I used the biscuit base that I use for my raspberry coconut squares and the caramel sauce I use with my sticky toffee pudding although I didn’t reduce it as much.

For the Condensed milk

1 can of coconut milk

1/4 cup of maple syrup

vanilla pod

pinch of salt

For the biscuit base

1/2 cup of almond meal/flour

1/2 cup of coconut flour

1/2 teaspoon of baking powder

1 beaten egg

1/3 cup of coconut oil (or butter or other healthy oil like macademia oil)

1/4 cup of maple syrup or honey (optional) – if not using, add extra 1/8 cup of  coconut oil (I used the extra oil and skipped the sweetener)

1 teaspoon of vanilla

For the topping

1 cup of dark chocolate chips or broken chocolate

1/2 cup of walnuts or pecans

1/2 cup of unsweetened coconut (I use a mix of shredded and flaked)


Grease and line a 9 x 9 inch baking pan.

Mix together the 3 ingredients for the condensed milk. Heat in a small pan and allow to simmer (stirring frequently) until it reduces to the consistency of condensed milk. This will take about 30 minutes. When done, remove the vanilla pod and whisk to ensure no lumps.

Whilst the milk is cooking, mix together the ingredients for the biscuit base. They should form a soft dough. Ensure the oil is melted and the syrup/honey, runny. If you live in a colder climate, you might need to warm these in a pot. Press the dough into the baking pan using a potato masher and bake for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees until golden brown.

When the biscuit base is done, layer the coconut, chocolate chips and nuts on top and then pour the condensed milk all over the top. Bake for a further 20 minutes, allow to cool and eat it all……okay, don’t…..keep it in the fridge and eat one piece a day as a treat (aye right 🙂 )

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