In the last few weeks, I’ve been busy tying up loose ends of the book.
It’s been a tedious process – editing, re-editing, leaving the draft aside, then looking at it again with fresh eyes to edit it for the umpteenth time.
I keep wanting to add new things to the draft, to make it better, to make it really shine. And then, when I am drained of energy and inspiration and don’t know how else I can improve it, I turn to friends and family for help.
For someone who has always had an inferiority complex in my youth, and tends to have thoughts of self-doubt that often cloud my vision, it’s terrifying to show other people the draft I’ve put together – simply because doing so and asking for their feedback is almost the same as putting myself out there for criticism.
It feels like I’m baring my soul naked and exposing my deepest vulnerabilities.
It feels crazy scary. But also incredibly humbling at the same time.
In the past few months since I’ve started working on the draft – each step of the way bringing me closer to accomplishing my dream of self-publishing a cookbook – I’ve learnt quite a few lessons.
I’ve learnt that we often underestimate what a few hours of work a day can actually achieve in the span of a few months.
That what often seems impossible isn’t really that unachievable if you’re willing to work at it, a bit at a time, consistently, and never giving up. Persistence is a key element of success in any long-term project, and it’s necessary to have your motivation fixed on the end goal so you don’t give up half-way during the journey.
I’ve learnt that you have to fight hard for what you want; that you must believe in yourself and that you are able to do what you set out to do.
There will be dark, horrid moments of self-doubt and trust me, in many instances you will be your own worst critic. I think that’s just part of being human. But at the same time, there will also be periods of great inspiration and confidence, and it is in these positive moments that you will move quick and fast, and scale heights greater than you’ve ever dared to imagine.
I’ve also learnt the importance of asking for help and feedback – particularly from those you know will be honest and tell you the truth.
It’s a scary feeling to tell people “please tell me where this draft can be improved upon“, knowing that they could come back and literally tell you it sucks. But it’s also liberating, because you know that building upon their feedback makes your work better, it helps you learn from others and humble yourself.
This is one truly amazing journey – a trip that is still ongoing and which I’m enjoying to the fullest.
There has been so much encouragement and positive feedback from those whom I’ve mentioned the cookbook to; there are people whose very words give me the strength and energy to continue and keep on keeping on.
For every single one of you who has said a single kind word, given me a pep-talk, or flooded me with encouragement, I am so deeply grateful.
I’ve learnt that journeys are so much more enjoyable in the company of those who encourage and edify, and I am so thankful that I’m not riding this journey alone.
Thank you for believing in me and my cookbook.
Thank you so much to those of you who have been helping me to edit the draft and giving me new ideas to make the cookbook even better. Your effort, time and most importantly, faith in this project is so much more essential than you can ever imagine.
I’m working hard on make it worth every bit of your time and I’m working hard to make all of you proud.
This cookbook is something that I hope will positively impact everyone of you who read it, and with each edited draft, I am surer that that is what it was meant to be.
In the meantime, I wanted to share this lovely and easy recipe for crunchy gluten-free granola bars that you can easily make at home.
In this case, I used a mix of puffed rice cereal, chopped cashew nuts, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, diced apples, ground cinnamon, but granola bars are forgiving and you can use any mix of nuts, seeds and cereals you like.
You begin by mixing all the dry ingredients in one large bowl, until ingredients are homogeneously distributed. Mix in the melted butter and honey and stir well until dry ingredients are coated with the butter-honey mixture, before pouring the granola mixture into a greased baking tray and compacting it as flat and evenly as possible. Into the oven it goes for the next 30 to 35 minutes, and after it completely cools, cut granola evenly into bars the size of your choice.
- 5 cups of puffed rice cereal
- ¼ cup of cashew nuts, chopped into small pieces
- ¼ cup of sesame seeds
- ¼ cup of sunflower seeds
- ½ cup of apples, diced
- 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- ⅔ cup of butter, melted
- ⅔ cup of honey
- Pre-heat oven to 350 deg. Fahrenheit (175 deg. Celsius)
- Grease a large rectangular baking tray with butter of non-stick cooking spray
- In a large bowl, place the puffed rice cereal, chopped cashew nuts, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, diced apples, and ground cinnamon. Mix well until ingredients are homogeneously distributed.
- Mix melted butter and honey together, then pour over the dry ingredients.
- Mix well until dry ingredients are fully-coated with the butter-honey mixture.
- Pour the granola mixture into the prepared baking tray, and spread it until it covers the entire surface area. Use the back of a spoon to compact the mixture as evenly as possible.
- Bake granola mixture in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes.
- After removing the baking tray from the oven, use the back of a spoon to compact the mixture even further.
- Let granola mixture cool completely (wait 30 to 40 minutes) before cutting with a sharp knife into bars of your liking.