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Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

Hey, you know what?

I’ve never been to Mexico, but what I’ve seen from food documentaries and the little experience that I’ve had eating at Mexican restaurants makes me imagine that Mexicans are jovial, happy people who enjoy their food.

Well, I suppose the only Mexican food that I’ve actually tried is the taco, and the simple fact that it’s a dish that requires assembly of your ingredients and then eating the final product with your hands (instead of a fork and a knife), already gives me the impression that Mexicans know how to savor their food, and enjoy the connection with food that eating with their hands brings.

Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

In fact, when I first started cooking two years ago, tacos were among the first dishes to make it to my testing menu (case in point: check out these beef and chicken tacos); and I’ll admit that it still ranks among my favorite meals to make. Making tacos on a weeknight is a great way to throw together many distinct ingredients and create a meal that’s both colorful, tasty and incredibly easy.

In a way, making tacos is my shortcut to a mid-week dinner that doesn’t take up a lot of time, but still tastes good and delicious. In fact, I made it so often it had become one of my specialties.

Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

This year however, I found myself in a semi-dilemma after I started my wheat-free diet. How was I going to make tacos if the taco shells were made of wheat? Because I didn’t know a way out then, I literally stopped making tacos for a couple of months.

But, about a month back, I found the solution….an adapted version of Wheat Belly’s flaxseed wraps.

Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

Completely wheat-free, and made with ground flax seeds instead, these wraps are the perfect alternative to tacos, even though they are slightly thicker and have a stronger taste of eggs. I adjusted the original recipe from Wheat Belly because I found them to be a little too thick (more like pancakes instead of crepes), so I added a lot more water, and loved that despite being slightly thinner, they still had an elastic consistency that allowed them to be folded without breaking.

Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

These wraps, a light brown in color thanks to the ground flax seeds, can be manipulated into whichever size you like, and with just a light touch of butter, a wrap can be made in a non-stick pan within minutes. While this may take a bit longer than buying ready-made wheat tacos and heating them up, I think it’s still worth the extra time.

I like eating these wraps with a generous slather of cream cheese, shredded chicken, rich creamy avocado, cubed tomatoes and onions, sweet corn, and then garnished with chopped fresh parsley and shredded cheese.

They’re quick, delicious and might I say, finger-licking good.

Grain-free Chicken Avocado Flaxseed Wraps

 

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

I hate to admit it, but I’ve finally come to accept that the season for tank tops, short skirts and flip-flops are now quite a shadow of the past.

While we’ve been spared from drab, grey skies that scream the arrival of winter (thank goodness not yet!), gone are the days of warmth and glorious 20-something degree Celsius weather.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

Last weekend, strong winds swept through the city the entire Saturday, and when these relentless gales finally died down on Sunday night, a new phase officially installed itself.

One that calls for boots and leg-warmers, thicker jackets and woolen scarves. One that sees people stuff their hands into their pockets and bend their heads downwards in order to keep the cold away.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

I finally had to dig around the back of my cupboard to pull out the warmer clothing, those pieces of clothing that had silently taken second place during the entire summer, and even during the first few weeks of autumn.

But now, as I reach for them, almost a month since autumn took center stage, pushing past the thinner shirts and shorts and dresses, I seek and find comfort in their woolen textures; their thickness no longer a bother as it was in summer, but a missed welcome.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

The cold weather makes me feel more like staying at home instead of going out; and on days such as last Saturday, where strong winds and the deep chill makes you catch your breath, all I wish to do is be in comfortable clothes and to stay warm.

So baking has become quite good indoor activity on these days (which are becoming more and more frequent).

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

I crank on the oven even before the recipe says it is necessary, just because I like the warmth that emanates from the oven door. I find the slight whirring sound of my gas oven a familiar background noise and at times, good company. Call me weird but in my tiny two-square-meter kitchen, I feel pretty much at home and in happy spirits, especially when it’s just so darn cold outside.

Understandably so, I now try to find every possible excuse to bake; even when there isn’t much in my pantry except a half-empty packet of rolled oats and some overly ripe bananas.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

I found the perfect reason to turn on my gas oven the other day; when despite a rather barren kitchen, I had just the right recipe to experiment with.

I’d seen Pure Ella’s two-ingredient cookies online not so long ago, and given that the only ingredients on the recipe were exactly what I had in my tiny kitchen, I dived head-first into making them. (I mean, two ingredients only? Wow, I definitely had to check that out!)

Ella’s recipe called for four bananas to every two cups of oatmeal, but I had only three bananas, and decided they would have to do. (That’s how desperate I was to bake, as you can tell).

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

It still surprises me how combining such few ingredients can result in something not only edible, but that actually tasted good.

This is a recipe that’s so quick and easy to make, and preparation time is a little as 10 minutes, with the only difficult thing to do being mashing the bananas. I wanted to add in a little more kick with some ground cinnamon, and after mixing the cinnamon and oats with the mashed bananas, all that was left to do was the form them into equal sized balls of dough and then flatten them out.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

Instead of cookies though, I found that the texture was more like that of a scone, given its dense and chewy texture from the oats, perhaps due to the fact that I’d used three bananas instead of four.

But they tasted good even so. Since there was no extra sweetener added, these scones had the slight hint of sweet bananas without being overly sweet.

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

I had them with a glass of milk and they were delicious on their own. The second day, I tried them with a little bit of jam, and loved them even better like that. I definitely recommend trying the second option, especially if you want a bit more of sweetness on your scones.

How about you try them yourself and let me know which way you prefer? I’d love to know!

Gluten-free Banana Oatmeal Scones

Gluten-free Almond Granola + Begin it now.

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. The moment one definitely commits oneself, all sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred.

Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”

-    Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Gluten-free Almond Granola

A few weeks ago, Anna from The Yellow Table announced that she was going to bake 200 jars of granola to help raise funds for her friend Bri’s cancer treatment. I jumped at the chance to do a good deed and donated to support Bri, and so did many others. (I didn’t claim the granola, and it didn’t matter anyway, because I just wanted to do something for Bri.)

Within a week, all 200 jars of granola had been sold, with all donations made to Bri. Above all, I was amazed at the level of commitment Anna had to making a project come to pass, and at the fact that she was bold enough to plan something that seemed so large and impossible.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

I’ve always admired dreamers – those whose dare to dream big and think up thoughts that others may deem impractical or ridiculous.

But more than that, I’ve always been inspired by doers – the ones who don’t take no for an answer; the ones who decide they will do all they can to write their own story; the ones who do and make things concrete.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

So when I saw Anna reaching out to her blog readers and asking us for help (money-wise), to help Bri, someone we did not even know, I felt impacted. 200 jars seemed like an incredible amount of granola, and how many people would donate? But Anna made it happen, and I think Geothe’s quote above helps put things in perspective.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

I consider myself a dreamer – I have big dreams of becoming a writer whose words will leave an impact on those who read them; and I have dreams of travelling the world (Europe in particular).

But what I need to be, more than anything, is a doer.

I’ve seen it take place first hand; and know that when you set your heart to something – despite the possible obstacles and difficulties there may be, or the fact that the odds are clearly not in your favor – the very act of committing to making it work will tip the balance closer to you.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

Sometimes it’s just talking to people who are supportive and telling them your dreams – announcing definitively to the world what your intentions are, making sure there is no way you can back down from what you’ve said.

Other times it’s the very act of searching online and finding resources that will bring you closer to your dream; like planning out your Europe road trip, or buying less dresses and putting that money away for the day you’ll buy your plane ticket. Most times, it may be just practicing what you know and doing it day after day, month after month, year after year, like I do with writing this blog twice a week, until I am ready to be a writer.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

And then, maybe the Universe really starts conspiring to help you achieve your dream; doors start opening up where previously they seemed locked; and then the magic happens.

But for all that to take place, you’ll first have to begin.

Start something, anything, but just begin.

I think first steps are always the hardest, most difficult and the scariest, but it’s the power of the first step that sets the journey in motion.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

I made a slightly adapted version of Anna’s granola last Friday, and as the aroma rose from the oven and filled the house, I thought about Anna and her project to help Bri.

As I pulled out the tray of granola from the oven and stirred the mixture of oats, nuts and seeds, then put it right back in to bake some more, I marveled at the fact that she decided to just do it.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

And today, when I read the quote above, this imperative order to “begin it now”, I feel amazingly empowered.

I hope you’ll reach for your dreams, just as I’ll reach for mine. I hope you’ll take the first tiny step to begin a journey (however long or tough) towards your goals, just as I’ll take mine.  I hope you’ll dare to imagine your wishes fulfilled, just as I’ll imagine mine.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

Remember this.

Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.

Begin it now.

Gluten-free Almond Granola

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Grain-free Coconut Almond Bread

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Grain-free Flax Garlic Crackers + Live your story.

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Chocolate Coconut Quinoa Cookies + I am blessed

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In the past four years that I’ve lived in Argentina, I’ve attended at least four weddings, but to say the least, none of them were as epic and as memorable as the one we went to last weekend. This was THE EVENT of the year, as I’ve told you before, and in the past one month during which we prepared for Barbi’s and Agus’ wedding (think hen parties and dinner with the best men, and many other meet-ups just to

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