Spicy Lentil Burgers

So I’ve recently decided that I’m going to  be vegan, as a result  I  am forced to really change my thinking about food. So I’ve been working on my cooking and baking skills as well as exploring new yummy vegan recipes.

I do love a hearty burger but after I have eaten I never fail to feel super sluggish.  These vegan burgers are packed with flavour and  are so filling but, with all the high fiber and iron goodness of lentils.

Ingredients

  • Lentils 3/4 cup
  • Water 1 3/4 cups
  • Breadcrumbs 1 cup
  • Olive oil 1tbs 
  • Salt 
  • Black pepper
  • Chili powder 1 tbs
  • Garlic powder   2 teaspoon
  • Cumin 1/2 teaspoon
  • Dried thyme 1 teaspoon
  • Dried basil 1 teaspoon
  • Nutmeg (pinch)
  • Onion powder 2 teaspoon
  1. Rinse and clean your lentils and add water to a pan. Bring to boil and continue to cook the lentils till they are soft.
  2. Now that they are soft drain your lentils  and place in a medium size bowl.  Then using a potato masher, mash the lentils till they are of a mush constituency.
  3. Now just add all your dry ingredients and the olive oil and mix well.
  4. Begin to form your burger patty’s to any size you desire.
  5. Place on plate and store in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hr.
  6. Now that the burgers are firm heat up a pan with any cooking oil of choice and begin to grill your burgers till they  have a nice brown sear each side
  7. Pair with any bun (or lettuce if you want to cut down on the carbs.)
  8. Add your favorite burger toppings and sauces and enjoy x

Comment below with your favourite vegan recipes and tips x

Juggling the oranges of life

Being lazy and things of that nature.

I can’t juggle oranges.  A small fact about my self that I thought I should just share with you. What I’ve recently realized is that apparently I’m also not very good at juggling things in my life. There seems to be a recurring theme in my life where I think of great idea, a new task or hobby  that I plan to take on, go full steam ahead. And then a few weeks go by and I’ve soon forgotten about it all.  To be honest that cycle hasn’t ever really bothered me, mainly because  I clearly wasn’t that interested if I can’t be bothered to do after a few weeks, not to mention that it is in my nature to often get over excited/ too carried away with things at times.

But when this cycle happens with things that you actually really want to do then there is a clear problem. I’m lazy. I’m not proud of it but I will admit it.  I have a super creative mind and tons of ideas but executing these Ideas doesn’t come so easy. To be the best in whatever your chosen passion is you have to work at, and by work at it I don’t just mean think about it for hours.  Real time and effort comes in many different forms, whether it be researching, investing in the literature, finding your faults and best features.  However, this is definitely easier said than done especially when you are doing other things like at University studying an intensive course.

So I can’t juggle oranges. But I do want to practice and try to juggle all the things in my life. I may not always succeed and be the best  at everything I do. And to be perfectly honest I don’t want to be. I just want to be the best at me because that truly is the only thing I can be, everything else outside of that is just fake.   This does by no means gives me a valid reason not to try. So this is  really just a self-confession to all of you to say that I am aware of how absent I’ve been from by blog and new YouTube channel. I’m  learning how to do all things I love in life whilst managing all the things I need to do in terms of my responsibilities. So here is  to not being lazy and giving yourself a kick up the butt. Because in truth no one else going to do it for you.

Mum.

This week we’ve had mothers day and international women’s day. It seemed only fitting that I would write a related piece  on one of the most inspiring women I know.

What does it mean to be a woman? An impossible question. A question with no real answer. There is no definition of what it means to be a woman. Sure we have  stereotypes and gender norms of what we think a women ought to be but, in reality a woman is whatever she makes herself to be. There is no right or wrong way to be women.

Yesterday the 8th of March marked the international women’s day 2016. As the official website says:

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. www.internationalwomensday.com

It is a day we across the world celebrate amazing women who have achieved great things  and are  bringing us just one step closer to equality. When I see the word woman. I see strength and might. I think of a badass and beauty. I think of soul and something so unique that it has been intriguing the world since time began.  But mostly importantly I think of my mother. What better occasion than for me to celebrate the woman who has taught me an immeasurable amount of life lesson and has given me the tools I needed to shape me into the woman I am today.

One thing I am super grateful of is that my mum taught me to accept my flaws and to embrace myself just the way I am which, is what makes me perfect and unique. After all there would be no point in God creating two of me. Right?

My big lips, my afro hair and broad nose were all perfect in her eyes. Now granted when I was younger I didn’t really appreciate all this wisdom being bestowed upon me. I thought she was just been an over bearing strict mother. I wasn’t allowed to really wear makeup, relax my hair and weaves were out of the question. However, there was a method behind the madness and it was to force me to accept my natural features. So when I was old enough to make a conscious decision about how I looked I could do it with the mind-set that no matter what I have on or how I do my hair. I will always be beautiful. My mum also gave me the freedom to self-express and to be happy in the choices I make. I was able to find myself and make my own decisions on what type of women I wanted to be.

Another rule in my house that was enforced was, that I was never allowed to talk bad about myself. I would get in trouble when I would say things like ‘’oh I’m just bad a spelling” or “I can’t do that!”  I always thought, again, that my mother was just being over dramatic. I mean I was just bad at spelling.   But really she didn’t like me enforcing any negative perspective about myself.  Unknowingly  to me I was installed with the idea that I can do all that I put my mind to.  It is something similar to the power of positivity. My mother (and I) really do believe that if you speak things out into the universe they come to pass. Negative thoughts equate to negative actions.

My mum taught me that strength comes in all shapes and sizes. I was taught that there is no shame in showing your emotions and just being yourself.  Furthermore, (and mostly importantly)  opinions of others  don’t define you and you should never let them. That I should never hesitate to be the loudest in the room and speak my thoughts.

And for that I will be eternally grateful.

 

 

Hair.

A open letter to all those who have a opinion on mine.

Hair.

/hɛː/

noun

1.any of the fine thread-like strands growing from the skin of humans, mammals, and some other animals.

 

It’s seems like today everyone is talking about hair. There is not a day that seems to go by without some sort of new trend being created whether its glitter parting or denim dyed hair.It is amazing  how much hair can mean to someone. It is bigger than just the superficiality of looking good and what that does to your self-esteem. To some extent hair can really define a person, whether it is their femininity  or as a  symbol of a new start in their life.

I recently decided to cut my hair and now rock my short little afro (or tiny weeny afro as some like to say). I have never been super obsessed with my hair and would just casually chose what style I wanted, when I wanted it, depending  on what I felt. But cutting my hair  has introduced me to a new perspective and way of thinking that I didn’t realize had been installed in me from such a young age. Being afro Caribbean, hair is a huge part of our culture,  and has played a big part in my life.  It is moments like the bonding experience of a mother doing a daughter’s hair or the rite of passage when you learn how to correctly cornrow.  Just caring for my afro textured 4c type afro could be a job in its self and lets not talk about the all the hours I have spent in the hair shop getting my braids installed. So believe  me when I say I understand why hair is so important as well as the scope and depth of the attachment we can have to it, in particular how it can define our beauty.

Cutting my hair has taught me one thing.  That people will always have an opinion on my hair, even though I never asked them to. For some strange reason when a black girl decides to cut her hair short it soon becomes a topic of everyone’s conversation. My hair is my choice and if you do not like them please I advise you take that up with your god because that is a message that I don’t not want to receive.  You cannot place you narrow-minded conceptions about my hair onto to me so stop trying to. I am not on some sort of spiritual self-discovery journey because guess what I’ve been natural my whole life. Nor am I in a rebellious teenage stage trying to defy society norms. I just wanted short hair.  The fact that you may see it as unkempt and unprofessional is irrelevant because I refuse to believe that my god given natural hair is anything less than perfect.  I’ve had strangers try to touch my hair. Friends and family integrate me on why I would do such a terrible thing and have even had someone straight up look me in my eyes and tell me he doesn’t like it.

I’ve always described myself as confident and outgoing. I would say that I also have high self-esteem, and have been sure of who I am from a very young age. But I’m not inhuman. Certain comments, remark and stares do eventually get to you. You do start to worry about whether you look attractive enough, will people start to think you look like a boy.  All of sudden you want to hide away and then proceed to wish that you never cut it in the first place. Words do mean things, and when you are a young black girl in a world where you are constantly told you are less than, those words carry an extra bite.

It is of no help that distinctly black hairstyles that have been part of our cultures for years are all of a  sudden the hot new trends for celebrities and the runway. Bantu knots are now ‘Space Knots’, Cornrows are ‘boxer braids’ and everyone wants dreads.  I understand  that all this talk of culture appropriation is exhausting  and useless to  some of you.  While I am not purposely trying to come off as the angry bitter black women here, there is no escaping that it is very real thing and part of why people of colour across the world struggle with self-love.

Why? Well what it simple does is tell people of colour that their features and cultural styles will always been viewed as prettier on someone who is white.  And that damages the soul.

In reality I have much more important things to focus on than what people think of my hair and I should not be made to feel ugly or uncomfortable to let my hair stay in its natural state. So next time you want to comment on someone’s hair take a second to self-examine why you feel the need to say something (especially when they haven’t asked). Think about why you have these preconceived notions about short kinky hair. Why is my hair only beautiful when it’s straight or very loosely curled? Why does the length of my hair determine how feminine I am or not? And why can’t I just cut my and it simply just be a haircut rather than new life style change and journey.

Loving oneself isn’t hard, when you understand who and what ‘yourself’ is. It has nothing to do with the shape of your face, the size of your eyes, the length of your hair or the quality of your clothes. It’s so beyond all of those things and it’s what gives life to everything about you. Your own self is such a treasure. – Phylicia Rashad