Chai Ya Mdalasini (Cinnamon) Mix

I recently read an article that was shared by a friend that was titled “Tea if by sea, cha if by land: Why the world only has two words for tea”. The article outlines how both these terms originate from China and how the spread of the words depicts how globalization worked before the term “globalization” was a term.

In Swahili, the term chai is used. I grew up drinking chai in Mombasa. I find myself drinking chai now as a way to soothe myself after a long day. Chai is something that I took very much for granted in my childhood, I now approach it with more mindfulness. 

Anyway, there are two ways of drinking chai in Mombasa; either you can drink chai wa rangi (translating literally to chai of colour) which is a blend of fresh crushed ginger, chai spices, black tea leaves and nothing else. The second way is known as chai ya maziwa(chai with milk what is a so-called chai latte here in Europe). Chai is drunk in various ways in Mombasa as there are some recipes that lean more on the Indian influence and use more cinnamon, other recipes use more crushed ginger (chai ya tangawizi). Every household has their own way of preparing chai. I remember that as a child when we would visit my mother’s village in Embu a common breakfast would be margarine spread white toast bread stacks that would be cut diagonally into right triangles, that would be dunked into the chai. I loved this breakfast as I am a sucker for dunking all kinds of things in my tea! This type of breakfast is a staple for a lot of people across Kenya.

In Mombasa, people do also drink their chai with margarine spread toast bread. Yet there is also the traditional Swahili breakfast which is chai na mahamri ( mahamri is a cardamom-spiced doughnut that is not in the shape of a circle but in the shape of a triangle). Sometimes the mahamris are filled with mbaazi wa nasi (which is pigeon peas in coconut milk stew). So delicious!

People in Mombasa add sugar to their chai which in some cases has had not so good health effects on the people. I find that by adding maybe more fennel or more cinnamon, chai can be enjoyed without adding sugar.  Therefore here is my Chai ya mdalasini (chai with cinnamon) mix.  I made a video that shows the whole process:

 

One small disclaimer this is not your Nyanya’s way of making chai. This is my way which is very much inspired by how I am feeling, where I am, what I see, read and taste. If you want your Nyanya’s Chai mix then please just ask her.

 

 

 

 

Sweet Potato Brownies

As i write this post i am nibbling on one of these brownies. In my last post i suggested that as a meal prep you should prepare something sweet for the week. This recipe is perfect for that. It is simple, cheap, chocolaty gooey, glutenfree, refined sugar free and 100% nourishing.

I made a video that shows the whole process. For the exact measurements scroll down.

 

Equipment:

35×25 cm oven dish (i used this one)

if you want to make a smaller tray just reduce all the recipes by half and use a 27×18 cm tray

food processor

Ingredients:

4 medium sweet potatos (oven baked or chopped up boiled or steamed)

1 cup date paste or 24 pitted large dates

4 Tablespoons of melted coconut oil

2 cups ground up sunflower seeds (or hazelnuts,almonds or brazil nuts but sunny seeds are cheap and delicious )

2 cups of ground up oats

12 Tablespoons of cacao powder (unsweetend)

6 Tablespoons of sugarbeet molasses ( or whatever natural sweetner you prefer, also feel free to reduce the amount or leave this out completely and add more dates and plant milk)

pinch of salt

dash of plant milk

dash of hot water

 

Method:

– in a food processor add the dates and a dash of hot water and process to a paste

– add in the sweet potatos and coconut oil and process everything

-in a mixing bowl add all the dry ingredients; oat flour, sunflower seed flour, salt and cacao powder

– pour the sweetpoato mix into the mixing bowl, add the sugarbeet molasses and stir everything together

– if the mix is too dry add in a dash of plant milk or water and stir. The mixture should be sticky and gooey but not dry and and not runny either

-place some baking paper on a baking tray and pour the mixture in and spread out evenly.

-place tray in the oven and bake for 30 mins

– VERY IMPORTANT! remove from the oven and let the brownie cool completely this is very important. The longer you wait the better the brownie I usually let it rest overnight.

 

 

 

Blacker the berry sweeter the muffin.


This recipe was a roaring success with my brother, who is might i add a very picky person. He is not as supportive of my vegan lifestyle but then again there are not many people around me who are. It gets tough, but instead of arguing or trying to convince my  friends and family i just keep on cooking and preparing delicious meals and i almost always hear hmmmm it tastes real good, i didn’t know vegan could taste good. It tastes good because it is cruelty free and prepared with love and life in mind.

 

this recipe is based on the recipe by cakeinvasion

 for 12 delicious muffins

Ingredients:

230 gram whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 Tablespoon Vanilla ( not essence but actual vanilla)

zest from half a lemon

zest from half an orange

pinch of salt

6 Tablespoons of brown rice syrup( or agave or whatever you have but the sweeter the syrup the less you will need to use)

5 Tablespoons of coconut oil ( or whatever oil you use)

150ml freshly squeezed orange juice

1 Tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice

130g Blueberries ( i used frozen ones, but fresh works well too. If you like a lot of blueberries in muffins use 150g)

2 Tablespoons of whole wheat flour.

 

Method:

Preheat oven to 175 degree Celsius.

In a mixing can add in- if you have a lot of time sift in- the 230 grams of flour with the baking powder in a mixing bowl.

Add in the vanilla, salt and zests. Mix in all the ingredients with a wooden spoon.

Now add the oil, brown rice syrup, orange juice and lemon juice. Mix all everything well, stop mixing when the mixture is smooth and lump free.

In a separate bowl gently mix the blueberries with 2 tablespoons of flour and make sure the blueberries are covered with flour. This is done so that the blueberries don’t get all squashed up.

Place the blueberries into the mixture and fold them in gently.

Line  muffin tin with cupcake liners.

Portion out one and a half a heaped tablespoon of the muffin mix in each liner.

Place in oven and bake for 20 to 25 mins.

Set aside to cool, it is essential to let them cool as this allows the to firm up!

Enjoy these with tasty date paste or with a jam or spread of your choice as these wont be that sweet,- depending on what sweetener you use- I used brown rice syrup and they were perfectly fine for me but for those who like it sweeter there is an array of spreads to use! or devour these sprinkled on top of nicecream or with a cool smoothie the possibilities are endless really!

 

Tip: you can lick out the raw mix as it is vegan! Oh yea 😀