Peppermint chocolate almond bark

Things are getting very very busy as I prep to leave for Uni in a couple of months, and so the newest development in my life is that I have started meditating in the mornings and running in the evenings, which might seem a little contradictory in nature but it actually functions like a very well balanced see saw of energy and calm. (Does that make sense ?) Meditation is everything it promises to be - peaceful, satisfying, humbling and remindful of the fact that no matter how much is on your (my) plate, there’s still some space for more. 

Speaking of satisfying feelings, there is something really soothing about tempering chocolate. If you haven’t done it before, it is a little bit tricky and demands precision but it’s also very quick to learn and fun to practice. This chocolate almond bark was (as always) a last minute, unplanned thing and came out of my sudden urge to up the fancy on another dessert. You can make it in under 15 minutes, then let it harden, break it in shards and use it an embellishment on a cake or any other dessert or an ice cream sundae, and so on; be creative! 

It also opens a window of options - i made my mine with sea salt and pralined almonds, but you could use hazelnuts, cranberries, coconut, or a whole bunch of other things. Imagine there are no rules, so use whatever is in your pantry and tastes good with chocolate! The only rule-ish advice is, use good (GREAT) quality cooking chocolate. Since chocolate is basically the entirely of what you’re making, use the best quality you can. I recommend Valrohna or Ghirardelli. For this particular recipe I used Ghirardelli 70% Chocolate - my favourite ! 


200 g cooking chocolate
2 tsp peppermint oil
1 cup pralined almonds, slightly crushed
sea salt 


Line your oven pan with tightly with cling wrap and keep aside
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl suspended over a pan of simmering water
Use a wood spatula to mix and stir as it melts. 
Remove from heat when melted completely & add 2 tsp of peppermint oil and stir
Pour into the prepared pan and sprinkle with pralined almonds (or nuts of your choice) and sea salt
Refrigerate till hardened completely
Break into pieces and store in a cool dry place or in the fridge if you live in a warm climate like I do! 

Chocolate chip banana bread

Greetings from the jungle!!!! This is super exciting - I’m currently sitting in a jungle resort as I write this post. It’s exactly how you’d imagine, except with a spa next door and a moody wi-fi. I am at my millennial worst, checking emails between Safaris and taking pictures of my meals during lunch (the food here is incredible!). 

Besides this, the trip featured bumpy jeep rides, trips to the jungle spa (which is like a regular spa), drinking bloody marys with my dad in the evenings, an airport that’s the size of my dining room (tiny!) and of course heaps of wildlife creatures that are simultaneously cute and scary. 

Before this i haven’t been on a wildlife holiday (or anything remotely adventurous) in 10 YEARS which is both sad but also super exciting at the same time. The forests make me feel 3 things. Curious, because of this incredibly mysterious ecosystem that we (I) know too little about. Fascinated. And Nostalgic. It reminds me of the many, many wildlife parks I went to as a child and also of all my favourite disney movies, Jungle Book, Tarzan and Lion King  (I was more of a disney jungle person than a disney princess person). As much as I love travelling to new places, I also love revisiting something I haven’t done in a long time. 

But I’m easily nostalgic so I don’t know. I’m as nostalgic about Jungles as I am about banana bread ever since I used to being it in my school tiffin. This Banana Bread is something I’ve been baking for a lonnnnnggg time but I’ve modified the recipe a little bit. It’s even more delicious, has a soft crumb and boasts of comforting, un-fussy flavours. Hope you’ll love it as much as I do. Here’s the recipe: 


100 g butter
180 g sugar
190 g flour
2 eggs
4 ripe bananas
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salf
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp milk
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips


Preheat your oven to 180 ˚ C. 
Line a 8 inch loaf pan with greased parchment paper. 
Mash 3 of the bananas with a fork and set aside.  
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla & milk. Stir in the banana. 
In another bowl, mix the flour, baking powder and salt
With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until fully combined
Be careful not to over beat. Stir in the chocolate chips. 
Pour the batter into the pan. Slice the last banana lengthwise down the centre and place on top. Sprinkle the top with granulated sugar. 
Bake in the centre of the oven for about 45 - 60 minutes, until a toothpick pierced into the middle comes out clean. 
Let it cool and take out onto the rack. 
Slice & Eat once cool! Yummy!