Oats in a Jar – Classic Tiramisu Oatmeal

Classic Tiramisu Oatmeal - 1

“My perfect morning is spent drinking coffee, eating porridge and reading the paper at a local cafe.”
– Anton du Beke

October 28th is celebrated as National Oatmeal Day in United States. This day, I took an oath to try out 5 different variations of breakfast oatmeal all the while making sure that it excites my taste buds and yours. Albeit its multiple nutritional properties, oatmeal is generally considered a boring meal option. With ‘Oats in a jar’ series, my aim is to change this perception about oatmeal…one jar at a time. Join me in this endeavor and together lets give this healthy food option a spot in our daily diet.

How about a breakfast that combines coffee and porridge, both? Brilliant, I say! If coffee makes your world go round, you are sure to enjoy this guilt-free version of tiramisu. Tiramisu, in Italian, literally means “pick me up”. This Tiramisu oatmeal is going to kick start your morning like a boss and if you are feeling down anytime during the day, it is going to pick you up. For sure 🙂

Classic Tiramisu Oatmeal - 2

When I had my first bite of this heavenly breakfast oatmeal, it was gratifying to say the least. To attain the much coveted healthy status, I have replaced Italian Savioardi biscuit base with coffee flavored oatmeal and mascarpone cheese with a combination of ricotta cheese and greek yoghurt. This version of oatmeal does not taste like cardboard, I promise. Give it a go peeps!

Classic Tiramisu Oatmeal

Serves: 1

Ingredients:
1/4 cup quick oats
3/4 cup milk
Coffee mixture: 1/4 tsp instant coffee mixed with 1 tsp warm water
2 tsp maple syrup
1 tbsp ricotta cheese
1/2 tbsp greek yogurt
2 tsp sugar/natural sweetener (or to taste)
1 drop of vanilla essence
1 strawberry for garnish

Method:
Cook oats with milk on low flame. Add maple syrup and half of the quantity of coffee mixture while cooking.
If you want a stronger taste of coffee, feel free to add more. I recommend adding the coffee mixture in parts, and not all at once.
Once the oats are soft, pour it in a jar.
In a separate bowl, mix ricotta cheese, greek yogurt, vanilla essence and sugar.
Layer it over cooked oatmeal.
Garnish with strawberry.
Enjoy!

You can view my Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal recipe here.

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Oats in a Jar – Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal

Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal - 1

“The prayers we weave into the matching of socks, the stirring of oatmeal, the reading of stories, they survive fire.”
– Ann Voskamp

October 28th is celebrated as National Oatmeal Day in United States. This day, I took an oath to try out 5 different variations of breakfast oatmeal all the while making sure that it excites my taste buds and yours. Albeit its multiple nutritional properties, oatmeal is generally considered a boring meal option. With ‘Oats in a jar’ series, my aim is to change this perception about oatmeal…one jar at a time. Join me in this endeavor and together lets give this healthy food option a spot in our daily diet.

I was never an ‘oatmeal’ girl. The first time I brought it home was when Stud (my first born) turned six months old and the doctor advised us to incorporate it in his meal plan. The version I used to make for him usually consisted of quick oats, chicken, salt and pepper, carrots, beans, broccoli and/or any other veggies that used to be available at that point in time. For my personal taste, it was too bland. Now that I have finally acknowledged the virtues of this super-hero of a crop (you are welcome, oats!), I am  making a genuine effort at reaping its benefits.

Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal - 2

This Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal is a great substitute of an actual blueberry cheesecake slice. You get to enjoy the deliciousness packed with countless health benefits, making it absolutely guilt-free. And look at those layers, man! When Jay saw the jar this morning, he thought I am again having some kind dessert for breakfast. That really tells you something about this version 🙂 Try it out and see for yourself.

Blueberry Cheesecake Oatmeal

Serves: 1

Ingredients:
1/4 cup quick oats
1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp fresh blueberries
2 tsp maple syrup
1/8 cup low-fat Philadelphia cream cheese
1/2 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp sugar (or to taste) to cut the saltiness of cream cheese
1/2 digestive biscuit/ graham cracker crumbs for garnish, optional

Method:
Cook oats with milk on low flame. Add 1 tbsp blueberries and maple syrup while cooking.
Once the oats are soft, pour it in a jar.
In a separate bowl, mix cream cheese, lemon juice and sugar.
Layer it over cooked oatmeal.
Add a layer of digestive biscuits/ graham cracker crumbs if you wish to.
Garnish with remaining blueberries.
Enjoy!

 

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Lets be breast friends!

Disclaimer 1: There is no need to scandalize the title of this post (or go all “haayey Allah!”) since it is not intended to objectify any part of a woman’s body. The aim is to raise awareness about the dreaded C-word when used in conjunction with breasts…Cancer.

breast friends - 1

October is marked as Breast Cancer Awareness month in various parts of the world. Fundraisers, events and health campaigns are organized to raise awareness about the disease which kills more than 40,000 women every year, in US alone[1]. Having said that, when detected and diagnosed at an early stage, breast cancer patients have a 5-year survival rate ranging between 93% – 100%[2]. Therefore, early detection and diagnosis is the key to fighting a successful battle and ensuring a better quality of life.

Being in my 30s, coming across these stats was highly disturbing for me. However, just fretting over the fact that I could turn into a stat one day, would not solve the problem. Therefore, this year I genuinely decided to think pink and be a good breast friend. Mind you, this doesn’t involve purchasing and sporting a pink ribbon or getting trapped into commercialization of this terrible disease. It quite literally involves walking the talk. Lets discuss.

How to be a good breast friend?

breast friends infographic - 2
Content, concept and design by My Spoonful Of Fun

Critical Illness Insurance 101

Disclaimer 2: Having worked a good number of years in insurance industry, I have gained a fair knowledge of how critical illness plans work. That being said, the plans listed below are a mere recommendation. Kindly do your own due diligence if you intend to get enrolled in any of them.  You would notice that my recommendations are limited to certain geographies. That’s because I have lived there at some point in time or am currently living there.

Different kinds of illnesses are covered under critical illness insurance plans. Make sure that the one you opt for has breast cancer covered. These plans generally give a lump sum cash amount on diagnosis of cancer. The patient decides if he/she wants to spend it on chemo, surgery, medical tourism, etc.

The list of critical illness insurance plans below will give you a head start on your search for the perfect plan that works best for you.

United Arab Emirates: WomenCare plan offered by Commercial Bank of Dubai and Critical Illness plans offered by Mashreq Bank and MetLife UAE.

Pakistan: Secure Critical Illness Plan by Jubilee Life and Critical Insurance Cover by EFU Life Assurance.

United States: Check with your insurance provider if your existing coverage covers breast cancer treatment. If you are a US citizen or a green card holder, you might want to consider Critical Illness Insurance by Liberty Mutual or plans similar to it.

Having a Critical illness insurance cover ensures that the financial aspect of breast cancer treatment is taken care off. Even if you never get to use this coverage, there is no price tag attached to having a peace of mind.

Final Thoughts 

Our success in reducing the number of deaths from this disease does not depend on the pink ribbons (or a lack thereof) on our shirts. It depends on making a concerted effort towards supporting research, prevention and treatment of breast cancer.

Since charity begins at home, be mindful of your own bodily changes first. And speak up about breast cancer. Please. Talk to your friends, family members, colleagues and domestic helpers (if any) and educate them. Set a date with your bestie to get a screening done together.

In most societies, it is still a taboo to raise voice about women’s health issues. When we are not ready to acknowledge a problem, how do we expect to find a solution for it?

Lastly, I would like to take a moment to honor all those beautiful women who lost their lives fighting this terrible disease; and to all those who warriored on and came out of it stronger. If you (the reader) are currently battling this disease or have a loved one who is, may the force be with you. Sending prayers and strength your way.

Here’s to being good breast friends!

P.s: If you liked this post, please feel free to share. If it drives even one person to get themselves screened, or make a donation towards this cause, you have done your bit in raising awareness. After all, little drops of water make a mighty ocean. Thanks.

Article Resources:
[1]NationalBreastCancer.org
[2]Cancer.net

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