Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Flourless Banana Pancakes

My schedule at the moment means I have time to spend making breakfast, and it always feels really indulgent. One of my favourite breakfast treats is also one of the easiest and cheapest to make.

- Mash up one banana, the riper the better
- Whisk up two eggs and mix it all together (with a spoonful of peanut butter if you're feeling cray) until it is the texture of batter
- Ladle small amounts into a hot frying pan greased with a little coconut oil.
- Serve with whatever toppings take your fancy

Easy peasy and definitely better than these sketchy protein pancakes I see online!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Fake Cake

I love cake. I swear I have a separate dessert stomach because, no matter how full I am, if someone offers me cake there's no way I'll turn it down. That's why I was delighted to come across these amazing baked protein oats, with the texture of sponge cake but none of the added sugar and butter.

Laura's Vanilla & Raspberry 'Fake Cake'

Serves enough for one greedy person, or 2 well-behaved diners

40g oats
150ml milk (I usually go with almond milk, but cow's milk works just as well)
2 whisked egg whites
1tsp baking powder
½ scoop vanilla protein powder (I use the Vanilla Stevia Impact Whey Protein from MyProtein)
Handful of raspberries

Preheat your over to 180°C.
Throw all of the ingredients together and mix it up.
Put the mixture into a pyrex dish or cake tin.
Pop in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
Leave to cool slightly before serving with low-fat quark or greek yoghurt and some extra berries.

The mixture in the oven

The finished product (demolished slightly by a very hungry yours truly)

Happy scoffing, my friends!

Friday, November 14, 2014

A visit to the hairdresser

I hate going to the hairdresser. In any country. Although I speak fluent German, I still don't feel confident that I will accurately describe what I want and it will all end in tears.

After weeks of Googling, indecision, peering into salon windows and watching my 'white highlights' becoming more pronounced (I'm a 24-year-old with grey hairs and flare-ups on teenage acne, life just isn't fair), I decided it was time for action.

After snooping around an expat forum (yuck), I came across Joel's Dreamhair in the 5th District and I can safely say I will become a regular. Joel is a South African and an English native speaker so the language barrier was a non-issue and the salon offers all-inclusive prices, a breath of fresh air in the world of Austrian hairdressers and their weird 'dry-your-own-hair' system.

This definitely isn't just a salon for us English-speakers though. Every other customer that walked through the door was Austrian (a good sign in my books, locals don't stand for crap) and all the staff speak perfect German.

I felt so welcomed by Joel and his team and the results are just fabulous - a gorgeous, natural ombre and the bounciest blow-dry (eat your heart out Kate Middleton!). I felt like skipping all the way home!

Feeling like a superstar

Joel's Dreamhair -
Arbeitergasse 11.

(I think I deserve a discount next time for this glowing review!!)

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Make-your-own Granola!

Living in the UK, I was used to just popping into the supermarket and grabbing a packet of granola which was (relatively) healthy and good value for money.

In Austria, cereals are lot more expensive, and if you're an avid label checker like me, you'd be disgusted at the amount of sugar the most popular brands have here. So, after a quick Google, I discovered making your own granola is easy, cheaper and, as you control what you put into it, a lot healthier.

Laura's Slightly Sweet Nut & Seed Granola
(makes ~2 weeks worth!)

2 cups rolled oats (whole are the best)
½ cup chopped raw nuts (I use the Nuts Royal mix from the Alesto Fine range at Lidl - a mix of hazelnuts, blanched almonds, cashews and walnuts)
¼ cup mixed seeds (I used chia seeds, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds)
4-5 tbsp runny honey
3-4 tbsp virgin coconut oil

(These measurements are really flexible, so adjust your ingredients as you go along to get the right texture)

1. Preheat your oven to 150°C
2. Chuck all of your ingredients together in a bowl and mix together with your (CLEAN!) hands. Make sure to combine everything together well so you don't get clumps of coconut oil. This part is nice and messy. The mixture shouldn't be too runny but everything should be sticky and clumpy.
3. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on a baking sheet or in a pyrex dish and bake for 10 minutes, until lightly toasted.
4. Wait for it to cool and then crumble up.
5. Voilà! Granola!

The finished product should be stored in an airtight container and should keep well for 2-3 weeks.

So, give it a try yourself and customise it to your own taste with dried fruits, maple syrup or even chocolate chips, if that's your thing.

The finished product (my first attempt)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

A Short Introduction

After toying with the idea for a while (and a couple of unsuccessful attempts at regularly updating other blogs), I have decided to document my new life in Vienna. This will include fashion, recipes, photos, lifestyle articles, reviews and whatever else might take my fancy.

If you're reading this, you are probably aware of who I am already, but just in case you're not...

My name is Laura.
I am 24 years old.
I'm originally from South-West England.
I have lived in Taunton (England), Aberystwyth (Wales), Berlin (Germany), Paris (France), Düsseldorf (Germany), Sarnen (Switzerland) and now I've settled in Vienna (Austria).
I am studying for my MA at Uni Wien.
Last year I decided to take control and get fit! I now eat (mostly) healthily, go to the gym 4-5 times a week and I'm working on my skills as a pole dancer.
I have always loved fashion.
I am allergic to selfies but I'm learning to increase my tolerance!

Cheers, until next time!