There was a sort of comfortable weirdness when I woke up and powered through a few weekdays, one of which I had to endure after 3 or so hours of sleep. It’s nice to trick oneself into thinking one is being productive burning the midnight oil, disastrously accompanied by bad snacks and waking up much earlier than everyone else, but the truth is that there’s always some form of give and take. So although I relish the time when no one else in halls is awake, it just doesn’t permit copious reckless nights. Yeah, you can’t have everything. Funny though, the routine has instilled within me a sense of adventure, a branching out of my little cocoon. The familiarity of routine does the same too, and has been proven to inherently generate creativity let alone being almost enlightening on certain occasions, but its disruption has so far proven to be worth it.
Late nights aside, sometimes random events re-instill that keen sense of belonging in the world. Almost self-regenerating. There are pockets of insight, creativity and adventure in every new street I wander, every friend I have over (hi Ruru!), every new café I visit, every baking adventure, every book I open. Do check the link out– Eagleman is an expert in his field and in the art of writing.
Just a little update on my french toast series– the french toast scene has been seriously overwhelming!! It’s what I’ve been getting up to when I’m not trying to memorise various facts on the Biology of Integrated Systems. I won’t reveal specific details or my personal opinion on the dishes for the sake of a comprehensive bird’s-eye view of everything in the future. So that’s that.
Going back to what I was referring to in the first paragraph on sleep cycles, there’s nary a fixed opinion on whether it’s best to be up much earlier or much later. I’m always up incredibly early, and one of my fallback breakfasts before the full light of day chucks me into the reality of (thankfully enjoyable) lectures, tutorials and lots of cold, is porridge. Usually toast, sometimes porridge, but when I do make the latter, it’s the most warm and delicious satisfying bowl of goodness. London always seems to be awake, but somehow there’s a sacred, solid peace just before the sun rises, usually between 7 and 7 30am.
This is when I hit the stove or microwave with my new favourite porridge oats, which I know sounds like child’s play but there’s simultaneously such satisfaction in a simple bowl of ready-made porridge, and what with having to travel with Charing Cross now and then, there’s less time to hover over the stove with totally unprocessed oats on the hob. This recipe is a simple twist on my favourite oatmeal recipe since forever, which utilises mashed banana and a simple method for optimum flavour and texture. Click on that link if you wish to try a classic oatmeal recipe that won’t fail your morning tastebuds.
Beetroot raspberry porridge (serves 1)
If using a microwave:
Mash half a banana with a fork in a microwave-safe bowl, then add a half cup (40-50g) of porridge oats or rolled oats, half a cup (120ml) of milk of choice (I used almond here), and half a cup of water. Add a teaspoon of beetroot powder, or if you don’t have that on hand, a tablespoon of beet juice works just as well. Add a handful of fresh raspberries, then briefly stir everything together so the beet powder dissolves into the liquid. Microwave on high for 3-4 minutes; check after 3 minutes and stir a while, if it doesn’t thicken up as much then chuck it back into the microwave and heat for another 30 seconds, or until you get your desired consistency.
If you prefer the hob:
Do the same as above, except have all ingredients in the saucepan. Bring everything to a boil on high heat first, then when the bubbling gets rather vigorous, bring the heat down to medium and continue stirring until you reach your desired consistency.
Serve with chocolate, more berries and maple syrup. The pairing of chocolate with berries and beetroot is marvellous, I tell you.