Monday, August 4, 2008

Make your Own Cocoa Puffs

One of the commitments we have made in our living of a healthier simpler life is to reduce our sugar intake. Generally I choose to bake recipes which contain less sugar or reduce the amount of sugar therein. Most modern recipes have smaller amounts of sugar than those that have been handed down to me from times when sugar was perhaps more cheaply abundant and not considered too bad for your health. I find that replacing sugar, and also salt, with spices (nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice) for flavour is very satisfactory. That’s for all my homebaking, but have you noticed how much sugar is in cereal? Not to mention other additives.

In my quest to have a lower gluten diet for our family many commercial cereals have already been eliminated from our diet, or the quantity consumed substantially reduced. We eat plainer cereal such as puffed rice and millet and corn, quinoa and millet flakes, rolled oats on occasion (as it does contain gluten) with nuts and seeds (well, these are for Mum only). Ess loves these grains also, but as she grows older she wants to have more variety and flavour. We sometimes add a small handful of Cheerios or Nutrigrains to her cereal mix. She also loves the addition of some cocoa and occasionally spices for flavour. This ends up being our own homemade Cocoa Puffs. So if ever there is a supermarket or peer pressured request for Cocoa Pops we can decide to make our own. When you add fresh spices and quality cocoa the flavour is delicious. I never hear any complaints. I must also say that I don’t think Ess has ever had conventional Cocoa Pops.

So the method is simple:

1. Place cereal of your choice in your bowl. Use a greater proportion of crispy rice puffs and add millet puffs, quinoa flakes and millet flakes, rolled oats etc.

2. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of cocoa powder. Please don’t use Nestle baking cocoa powder. The flavour of organic and fair trade cocoa is far superior. Further, see here for some informative links about chocolate and ethically responsible purchasing which avoid supporting the slave trade.

3. Allow your little one to mix and enjoy.

4. Wipe the cocoa faces clean!

I hope you and your family enjoys this homemade cocoa cereal. It may take a while for your tastebuds to adjust if you’re used to sugar in your diet but give it time, use quality ingredients and you will never turn back.

A last word from Ess who is writing this post with me: “I’d like to have just plain rice puffs and cocoa again like I used to – without all the other flakes etc.”

If this appeals to you, you will probably also enjoy my Warm Morning Muesli – a grownups version!

My Generous Gentleman, along with Ess, has also devised a new recipe for Chocolate Crackles using Fairtrade Chocolate which will probably be interesting for some of you. More on that later – if he agrees to allowing me to pass on the recipe!

1 comment:

LiEr said...

Hi there! Just visiting for the first time today and I've been trying to make it a point to leave a comment wherever I visit. What a beautiful blog! I do so like those quotations that precede the posts. They make me smile, think, marvel. The one about shoes and parents wearing out has to be my favorite! I've just had a little one too (our third)- born 2 weeks before your precious Eee. It's fun to read about them liking similar things at this stage in their lives (like batting at your gorgeous mobile. Love the colors!). It gets a lot easier to read posts than comment on them nowadays when life is so crazy-busy, but I thought I'd just say hello.

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