Food, Surviving Chaos

Vibibi: Kenyan Coconut Rice Pancakes

Vibibi or little coconut rice pancakes is a delicious dish from Kenya. Hundreds of years ago many different nations arrived to trade in Kenya along its coasts. Many of these countries influenced and blended with African traditions within Kenya. In cities like Mombasa, Arab and Indian influences help form the spice blend we see in Vibibi. In Swahili, Vibibi means little ladies and more than one so this recipes makes about 6 pancakes. But if you only want one, just say “kibibi”.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup (125 ml) water
  • 1/2 cup (118 ml) sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups (304 ml) rice flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon (.5 ml) cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil

Let’s Make It!

  1. PLAN AHEAD: It takes an hour for the batter to rise for this recipe.
  2. In a small bowl, mix yeast, water, and pinch of sugar. Let stand for about 5 minutes and the mixture will start to foam.
  3. In a big bowl mix sugar, rice, flour and cardamom. Then add coconut milk and yeast mixture. Stir well.
    1. Note: The batter should be pourable like pancake batter. If not, add a little water.
  4. Cover the bowl with a towel and leave it alone for at least an hour.
  5. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan on medium heat. Pour roughly 1/4 cup of batter in the pan and spread to form a small pancake.
  6. When bubbles start to form, flip the pancake to cook the other side.
  7. Repeat steps 5-6 to cook the rest of the batter. Be sure to heat a little more oil on the pan before pouring.
  8. Serve with fresh fruit and enjoy!

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Family, Travel, When in

Twin Lakes Park, Texas

Twin Lakes Park, Cedar Park, TX

Twin Lakes is a 50-acre tract of land that features hike and bike trails and beautiful native Texas flora and fauna. There is plenty of space to social distancing and the perfect outing for families who love to be out in nature. The park offers plenty of additional amenities such as pavilions, a swimming pool/water playscape, multi-purpose sports fields, an archery range, a beach/swimming area, and so much more! This is another great way to tour your own city; not sure how to do that? Check our my post here for some creative ideas to get you started.

On our trip, our kids loved stopping and reading all the nature facts and plant identification signs throughout the trail. They made sure they didn’t miss any so we ended up being at the park for longer than expected. The best part was seeing the GIANT red headed centipede crossing one of the trails to get to the creek on the other side. And of course my son started with his “Did you know…” facts for the rest of our trip and all the way home.

The Texas landscape was beautiful and you can’t beat that water fall! We saw so many natural creeks within the park and even a moss covered waterfall. Of course our kids said it reminded them of the smurfs…go figure! On our way out, we stopped by the lake and visited the ducks who were very friendly. I’m sure they were looking for food but alas, we didn’t have any. Mental note for next time. Also, don’t forget your camera as there are lots of photo opportunities within the park.

Surviving Chaos

In order to make the most of you time at the park and prevent kid meltdowns, I’ve provided some surviving chaos tips. Have fun exploring at the park!

  • Sunblock: Be sure to put on lots of sunblock to prevent sunburn. This is the first rule of thumb for any outdoor activity.
  • Early Morning: Best time to visit the park is early morning. It’s cooler, less crowded and your kids will have energy to burn. A fun filled morning at the park makes for a well rested and relaxed afternoon (I hope)
  • Backpack: This is the perfect place to keep water, first aid kits, sunblock, snacks, portable potty seat, etc. What ever creature comforts you need. Remember to keep it light weight since you’ll be doing a lot of walking and/or biking.
  • Snacks: Don’t forget the snacks! Apple slices, carrot and celery sticks, granola/protein bars, goldfish or whatever your kids like. You don’t want food meltdowns and HAN-gry kids in the middle of your hiking journey

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Family, Food, Surviving Chaos

Äppelpaj: Swedish Apple Pie

Swedish Apple Pie

Äppel means apple and paj means pie and when you put them together you get a scrumptious Swedish dessert. The Skåne region, in the south of Sweden, is famous for growing yummy apples so this recipe is a must! This pie is so good and so simple, you don’t even need to make a crust. It can be eaten warm or cold and don’t forget to top it off with ice cream or whipped cream.

Ingredients

  • 4-5 medium apples, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1 1/4 cup (250 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (5 g) cinnamon
  • dash of cardamom (optional)
    • Fun Fact: Cardamom is popular in Sweden where its called kardemumma.
  • 3/4 cup (170 g) butter
  • 1 cup (128 g) flour
  • 1 egg

Let’s Make It!

  1. Preheat the over to 350o (175oC). Put the apple slices in the pie dish.
  2. Combine 1/4 cup (50 g) of the sugar, along with the cinnamon and cardamom (if using), and sprinkle it over the apples.
  3. Gently toss the apples to coat them evenly in sugar and spice.
  4. Put the butter in a medium-sized bowl and have a grownup help melt it in the microwave.
  5. Take the melted butter out of the microwave and add the remaining cup of sugar and the flour. Stir to combine and then mix in the egg.
  6. Pout the mixture into the pie pan. Use the back of a spoon to spread the mixture over the apples.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes. That’s it….easy as pie!!
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Family, Surviving Chaos

Halloween Craft-Paper Pumpkins!

If you won’t be trick or treating this year and are looking for something fun to do, why not try paper pumpkins. This fun craft is courtesy of Easy Peasy and Fun blog which has lots of fun crafts for all the seasons. Of course when we did this craft we put our own spin on it…..yes, the top pumpkin is wearing glasses! Ha! Here are the super easy instructions in visual format. There is so much more you can do with these pumpkins, have fun!

Here is what you will need:

  • Orange Paper (regular or construction)
  • Green Paper (regular or construction) to make a leaf (optional)
  • Black Paper (regular or construction) to make the eyes and mouth
  • Glue (glue sticks are easier for little hands)
  • Scissors

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When in

5 Least Visited Places in the U.S.

Most of the time when people think about visiting the United States, they immediately plan trips to New York or Los Angeles maybe even Miami. Although the places are awesome, why not take trip off the beaten path? Why choose the road less travelled? The U.S. has a lot of hidden gems in other cities that are not as well known. Here is a list of charming cities we think are worth visiting when your looking for new adventures.

Boise, Idaho

Idaho may not seem interesting or may only be known for its potatoes but the capital of Idaho has so much more to offer. A youthful destination, you’ll find fresh air and low pollution as you stroll Basque Block. While your there, take a ride on the Boise River Greenbelt for some relaxation.


Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Gorgeous state parks, skiing, rocking climbing and Mount Rushmore all make Sioux Falls a fantastic place to visit. A river literally runs through the city – Big Sioux River is a site to see and ends in a series of rapids in Falls Park. And if your looking for something quirky, check out the butterfly house at Sertoma Park.


Bowling Green, Kentucky

What does cave spelunking, wooden roller coasters, and underground boat tours have in common? Bowling Green!! If you looking for something off the beaten path, this city’s got it! When your done with all your outdoors adventures, head over to the National Corvette Museum for a little car history.


Asheville, North Carolina

If your into the art scene, Asheville is the perfect place to be. The Downtown Art District is home to numerous art galleries and museums and has opportunities to showcase local up and coming artists. And since the city is located in the lush Blue Ridge Mountains, there is plenty of inspiration.


Santa Fe, New Mexico

If your looking for a centuries-old Spanish colony, then you want to visit Santa Fe. With architecture influenced by Pueblo people and distinct Southwestern feel, Santa Fe has lots to offer. And if your a foodie, the New Mexican cuisine, a blend of Mexican, Pueblo, and Spanish flavor and styles.

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