Sunday, May 1, 2016

Honey and Peanut Butter Booster Bars & A Rhubarb Smoothie - Cookbook Countdown

Cookbook Countdown is a cooking event organized by talented food bloggers Joyce and Emily to help cookbook collectors like myself finally take some of those cookbooks down from their shelves, dust them off and start cooking from them. For the past few months, that's what I've done. I'm taking a different approach this month with the book I've chosen. 
As some of you may know, I spent the last 2 years cooking through Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's book River Cottage Veg with the Cottage Cooking Club. The group is moving on to River Cottage Everyday, another of the author's books, and I'd purchased it a few months ago thinking I'd join in again, later changing my mind about that. The book may be new-to-me but it was published in 2009; it's been sitting on someone's shelf for 7 years so it counts, right?
My first picks were from the breakfast chapter of the book, something delicious to start your day with. My daughters and I love our smoothies and the Rhubarb and Orange Smoothie recipe really stood out as one I never would have thought of making. This one required a bit of planning since the rhubarb was poached first with honey and orange juice but once that was done it was just a matter of whizzing it with yogurt (and some extra juice). This was a hit, really tart and invigorating. I wouldn't necessarily poach rhubarb just for this recipe again but I frequently roast it as a dessert topping or make a Polish fruit punch called kompot with it; now, I'll be sure to cook extra just for these smoothies.
To go with was Honey and Peanut Butter Booster Bars, a granola bar of sorts, fairly high in sugar and fat but better than most store-bought. I tweaked it a bit and used only half the sugar, replaced the butter with coconut oil and omitted the final drizzle of honey at the end. Packed with oats, dried fruit and seeds, these were absolutely scrumptious and made a great little portable snack to eat on the run in the morning or have for an energy boost in the afternoon.
If you'd like to try either of these recipes, just click on the recipe name and it will link you to it. 

Some exciting news....Cookbook Countdown now has its own site! Be sure to visit it here to see the books everyone else is cooking from this month.

I'm linking this post to Cookbook Countdown hosted by Kitchen Flavours and Emily's Cooking (Makan2) Foray


  1. Zosia,

    This looks great, and I love your little changes here and there. Totally on your side with reduced sugar, and switching coconut oil in place of butter. How much coconut oil did you use to replace the butter, same amount or less? My copy of this book of Hugh's has arrived in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia but not yet at my door step. Irritating cos it has been two months from the day I ordered it!

    1. Butter is about 80% water so I used 20% less coconut oil, 100g but I would reduce that further next time and try it with just 50g. I hope you get your book soon, you'll need it for CCC!

    2. oops, butter is 80% fat

  2. My copy of the book arrived just today, but different edition from yours. Contents are amazing!

  3. Hi Zosia,
    The smoothie looks so creamy and yummy! What a great combination with the booster bars. I would be a happy gal if someone made me this breakfast! I have this book too, and it is a wonderful book, I have lots of recipes bookmarked to make, and it is going on my list for CC! So many books, sometimes I don't know which book to choose from!
    I'm looking forward to the recipes that you would be selecting from this book! Happy Cooking!


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