This week I'm on a week-long break from university (thank goodness!). I'm looking forward to having a bit of time to slow down, tick things off of my to-do list, and enjoy resting before the start of a new quarter. The Easter weekend is coming up, and I'm looking forward to spending some time with good friends and dear family reflecting on and celebrating the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. I cherish times that are spent with loved ones around the table, sharing a meal prepared with love and purpose.
One of my favourite authours, Shauna Niequist, writes in her book Bread and Wine: "If the home is a body, the table is the heart, the beating center, the sustainer of life and health”. As a newlywed, I am slowly discovering the truth of this in my home. The dining room table is a place where dreams are shared, where both bodies and souls can be nourished, and where hospitality can be practised in love. It is a place where strangers are able to become friends, where forgiveness is cultivated, and where we most often make memories with others. There is another sentence from this book that has also stuck with me since reading it: "The heart of hospitality is about creating space for someone to feel seen and heard and loved. It's about declaring your table a safe zone, a place of warmth and nourishment”.
Hospitality is all about creating a place for others to feel safe, loved, and heard. It is not about creating perfect meals, having the most beautiful crockery, or even about having the most well-kept home. Hospitality is about being open, honest, willing to allow others into your space so that they can open up in return. As the Easter weekend arrives let us be more willing to invite others into our space. Let us prepare a meal for friends, family, or even neighbours who we have never met, and share it with love.
Hot cross buns are served in many countries throughout the world to mark the end of Lent, Good Friday, and Easter as a whole. Different parts of these tasty buns are said to have specific meanings, with the cross representing the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and the spices used in the dough signifying the spices used to embalm Him before His burial.
This week's recipe is such an easy one to make. I have wanted to create something inspired by the delicious flavour of hot cross buns for a while now, just in time for Easter. I played around with a yummy spiced chia pudding recipe but just can't seem to take nice photographs of it (anyone knows how to make chia pudding look pretty???!). As an alternative, I created these really simple cookies that taste a whole lot like hot cross buns, with nutmeg, cinnamon, lemon zest, and raisins. They make for a delicious treat that can be enjoyed with a cup of tea, or even as a quick and easy breakfast. Their sweetness comes from the ripe bananas and raisins. Although they aren't quite as light and fluffy as real hot cross buns, using oats as a 'flour' makes these cookies a good alternative to regular hot cross buns, as they provide a more sustained release of glucose into the bloodstream. You can read all about bananas and oats, two of my favourite staple kitchen items in the Taste & See Pantry.
So if I were you, I'd get my hands on some bananas tomorrow so that they'll be nice and ripe in time for you to make a batch of these cookies by the time the weekend arrives. Please let me know if you do try them :) Tag me on Instagram or Facebook, or use the tag #tasteandseeblog. I absolutely love seeing your recreations of my recipes!
Total time: 40min
Yields: 12 cookies
- 2 medium bananas, ripe
- 2 cups whole rolled oats
- 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
- 1/2 cup raisins/currants
- 1/4 cup coconut oil/olive oil, melted
- 1 Tbsp lemon/orange zest
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Preheat your oven to 140 degrees C.
- Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well combined. Scrape down the sides if necessary.
- Scoop the mixture out of the bowl of your processor and shape into 12 balls of equal size. Place onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper and flatten slightly.
- Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, until the cookies have a golden-brown tint. They should still be nice and soft on the inside.
- Remove from the oven, allow to cool, and enjoy!
Store in an airtight container once the cookies have cooled down. Keeps for about 7 days in the fridge.