As I type these words, I am no longer a student. I have handed in my final project. That’s it, done forever. I seriously doubt this is a case of ‘never say never’ because believe me when I say I do not wish to be a university student ever again. Too expensive, and too exhausting. I’m proud and thrilled and excited, and I’m relieved that chapter of my life is behind me because now there are new and other exciting things to look forward to. Job applications, for one. (Note the dripping sarcasm.) (If anyone wants to hire a freelance proofreader/editor/copywriter, look no further. (Don’t make me beg, please.))
In all seriousness though, what a year it’s been. It had the intensity of the three years of undergrad study I did, in terms both of joy and stress. Crazy human being that I am, I’d do it all over again. A million times over. I’ve met and worked with a bunch of fantastic human beings, had the opportunity to work at two amazing Scottish publishers (and a third one this autumn!), went to the London Book Fair, created a book dummy (like, a real, palpable, holdable little book that I made, all by myself), visited a book printer and a book warehouse (so many books in one place ermahgerd), and also the cutest book shop in the entire world (located in a repurposed train station = dream home, I kid you not).
What’s next? I’m going to climb Dumyat again, and gaze upon this magnificent little town that I have called home for the past year. Start writing fiction again. Do some Netflix marathons while I apply for countless jobs. Get ready to release my next two e-books in October (!!!). Cuddle my cat till he can’t suffer me anymore. Read all my favourite childhood books all over again. Sleep in, and go to bed early. Skype my dad, who’s hardly heard of me through the Dissertation blackout. Prepare for my summer job: working at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (!). And eat summer tiramisu for breakfast, lunch and/or dinner.
Vegan Summer Tiramisu (gluten-free, wheat-free)
This recipe is indulgent yet relatively healthy (cookies are healthy, right?). It’s so light and summery that I like to eat it for breakfast sometimes. Lemon cookies pair well with Amaretto to create a perfect summer dessert that is guaranteed to please anyone, even the most veggie-skeptic among your friends. Feel free to use any summer fruits available to you: chopped peaches, currants, blackberries, nectarines… This tiramisu will keep in the fridge for 4-5 days (covered with cling film).
300g (10.5 oz) Dove’s Farm gluten-free lemon zest cookies
125ml (1/2 cup) light coconut milk
3 tbsp Amaretto liqueur
150g (1 cup) blueberries
150g (1 cup) raspberries
150g (1 cup) strawberries, chopped
Cashew cream layer:
300g (10.5 oz) cashews, soaked overnight
125ml (1/2 cup) water
60ml (1/4 cup) maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla paste or extract
Coconut whipped cream layer:
250ml (1 cup) coconut cream (scoop the fat out from a can of chilled, full-filled coconut milk)
4 tbsp icing (confectioner’s) sugar
cacao and cinnamon
1. First, prepare the coconut whipped cream: simply whisk the ingredients together, adding the sugar a little at a time to prevent a sugar dust storm, and chill in the fridge while you get on with the rest of the recipe.
2. Now make the cookie layer: place 12 cookies at the bottom of a 21cm x 26cm (8.5 inches x 10 inches) rectangular dish, then crumble the remaining cookies into the crevices. Whisk the coconut milk and Amaretto together in a cup, and pour over the cookies, covering them evenly. Set aside to let the biscuits absorb the liquid.
3. For the fruit layer you just need to cover the biscuit layer with the fruits.
4. Next make the cashew cream layer: in a blender or food processor blend the ingredients to a creamy consistency. Use a tamper if you need to, or add a splash of liquid to help your machine. Pour over the fruit layer. Chill in the fridge for about an hour to set.
5. Spread the coconut whipped cream over the cashew cream layer. Dust with a bit of cinnamon and cacao and sprinkle some cashew pieces over the top. Chill for another 1-2 hours to set.
Now devour that thing.
What do you recommend I do with all my free time now? 🙂