It’s nice to wake up in the morning to sunlight peeking out from behind the curtains, and birds singing merrily. There’s something energising about the world waking up at the same time as me. In winter it takes all the strength I have to drag myself out of bed in the cold darkness and into the shower, but now that it’s spring I love to go for a run in the mornings, usually in the park. There’s something very refreshing, relaxing even, about starting the day with fresh air and sunlight, and sharing my first waking moments with the ducks on the river and the gently swaying daffodils. Each day I notice young leaves beginning to emerge on a new tree, or fresh buds pushing their way up through the cold earth.
Spring is wonderful for many reasons, not least because I love watching the world warm up and come to life once more. It also means that more things are starting to grow. This recipe features one of Spring’s newest arrivals: strawberries. Yes, of course, these days you can get them all year round, but I feel like I’m cheating if I buy strawberries that have been flown in from Peru in November (not to mention the negative environmental impact). So it is always satisfying to find that locally-grown fruit is now available.
I made this last night after my exam as I wanted something sweet but that wouldn’t take ages to make or have a mountain of leftovers I couldn’t eat (or rather, could eat, but probably shouldn’t). It was super quick to throw together and is made of fairly wholesome ingredients. Perhaps it’s not cheesecake as you know it, but it gave me the sweet-fix I was looking for.
For the “biscuit” base:
- 1/3 cup porridge oats
- 1 tbsp almond butter (or regular butter), melted
- 2-3 tbsps pure maple syrup, to taste
For the rest:
- 6 large strawberries
- 1/2 cup full-fat Greek yogurt (or dairy-free equivalent)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup (optional)
- 1 strawberry and grated dark chocolate, to garnish
- Mix together all the ingredients for the base until it holds together and is fairly sticky. Press it into the bottom of a tumbler, or whatever you are serving the dessert in. Put it in the fridge while you prepare the rest.
- Mash the strawberries. I just did this in a bowl with a fork — you can make it as smooth as you like or keep it a little chunky if you prefer.
- Reserve 1 tbsp of the strawberry mixture, and pour the rest into the tumbler over the base.
- Mix together the Greek yogurt and remaining 1 tbsp of strawberry. Add a little maple syrup if necessary. Spoon this into the tumbler.
- Leave to set in the fridge for a while, or eat immediately. Add the decorative strawberry and dark chocolate just before serving.