• Peanut butter caramel oat bars
    love life and food

    Peanut Butter Caramel Oat Bars

    Happy Friday, everyone. I’ve promised quite a few people this recipe, so here it is (finally)! If the photographs look familiar that’s because I’ve posted them before. I wish I could say I made a fresh batch for today’s blog but as I’m home alone I’d only eat them all myself, and some things are just better shared.   These scrumptious little bars are best eaten straight from the fridge. Rather excitingly, they freeze perfectly and can be eaten within a few minutes of being taken out of the freezer. This makes them a very handy treat to keep on hand for any unexpected guests (or if you run out of…

  • Red beans, polenta and spring greens vegan Malawi
    love life and food

    From Malawi with Love

    On a sunny day in February I set off for Malawi, where I would spend a little over three weeks leading a research project for Concern Worldwide. As with anywhere I travel, I’m always curious about the food culture, local ingredients and regional specialities, and Malawi did not disappoint. Today’s recipe – bean stew with polenta and braised green vegetables – was inspired by the delicious, flavourful meals I enjoyed during my stay. But before I get to that, a bit of background to the trip… Malawi is increasingly feeling the effects of climate change and is particularly susceptible to drought and extreme weather patterns. This can have a huge…

  • Zambia village
    love life and food

    Zambia: Neither Feast Nor Famine

    I was never a fussy eater as a child, but on the rare occasion I’d hesitate over a Brussels sprout I’d be treated to that set piece of Irish parenting many of you will recognise: “Eat your dinner – children are starving in Africa”. To my six-year-old mind, Africa was a faraway pit of mass starvation. As kids we competed to fill our Trocáire boxes with loose change every lent, and later harangued the neighbours for sponsorship after bravely signing up for a 24-hour fast. Still, every year emaciated children too weak to brush the flies from their faces gazed listlessly out of our TV screens during the ad breaks.…