vegan

White Christmas Cheesecake

I’m dreaming of some White Christmas,
Just like the one used to eat.
Without the toxic copha,
Or processed sugars,
Or nasty, weird ingredients…..

I hope you sang that to the tune of ‘I’m dreaming of a White Christmas’? I feel like my lyrics need some work but I am too excited about this deliciousness to be bothered really. I had a couple of attempts at perfecting this recipe as the first few were good but didn’t taste like the White Christmas I remember. I feel like I nailed it with this one so you are welcome. You can get your mits on my WHITE XMAS recipe over at Gourmand and Gourmet, it’s delicious too.

Unfortunately I don’t have a photo of the innards (sounds gruesome) of this freaking amazing cheesecake because I made it for a party and I thought it may be frowned upon to take a cake that had already been cut into…. And probably that slice eaten…. I am sure the excuse ‘but I had to instagram it’ would not fly.

Base
2 cups almonds
2 cups fresh dates
3 tbs coconut oil

Filling
3 cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 4hrs then drained
250ml full fat coconut cream (I use the Ayam brand)
3/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 – 3/4 cup rice malt syrup/maple syrup/honey (depending on how sweet you want it)
1/2 tsp vanilla powder
1/4 cup goji berries
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots (sulphur free)
1/2 cup lightly toasted nuts (I used a mix of macadamias & pistachios)
1/2 cup shredded coconut, toasted
Optional- White Christmas for topping

For the base, blend all ingredients in the food processor until it all comes together like a dough. You can leave it as chunky, or make it as smooth as you like. Press into the base of a springform tin and pop it in the freezer to set while you make the filling.

For the filling, blend the cashews, coconut oil, coconut cream, vanilla & rice malt syrup until you get a really smooth mixture. Stir through all the remaining ingredients. Pour over the base, top with some crumbled White Xmas (optional) and pop back in the freezer to set. Remove from freezer 15mins before serving to allow to soften, slice, then serve. Stand back and watch people’s minds be blown.

Caramel Topping

There are no words…. Well maybe ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’. Yep. It’s that good, and easy. I mean 3 ingredients, there are no excuses for not making this. They’re not even weird ingredients like ‘mesquite powder’ or ‘saffron threads’ (seriously, what’s with saffron? That gear is like $3million an ounce. Not even joking. It’s not like it’s unicorn dust!). Anyway, that was a tangent, these are simple, easy to find ingredients. Your supermarket will have them, it’s not too late. Go now.

I used this as a warm topping for some homemade ice cream but it would also be a great filling for caramel tarts, caramel slice, as a cake icing, adding to some protein balls, straight from the jar or anything else splendidly caramel you can think of. If you think of other cool caramel uses be sure to share them in the comments below. No-one likes a selfish-Sally. Nothing against the Sally’s of the world.

15 fresh dates, pits removed
100g coconut oil/ghee or butter (I used ghee)
2 cups full fat coconut milk

Blend everything in a food processor or high speed blender until smooth. Transfer to a small pot and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 mins. You can add extra coconut milk if you want a thinner sauce, keep in mind it will thicken up in the fridge. Use as a caramel topping on anything you fancy. Your finger? I wouldn’t judge.

Nut Free No Bake Fig & Quinoa Bars

That title is WAAAYYYY too long but at least you know what your are signing up for right?! You can add nuts to this in place of the seeds and you could bake it if that tickled your fancy….. Then they would just be ‘Fig & Quinoa Bars’, much more succinct to say but a little more work to actually do. I’m not into that, and I’m impatient to eat this stuff. Baking creates timeframes that I just don’t dig today so ‘no bake’ it is.

So, I’m BAAAACCCCKKK! Baby Grace is now 10 days old and is a super cool little human but I thought it was time to stop the #babyspam and give you some food back….. Well after this last little bit of spam because she is bloody cute.

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Isn’t she just squishable!!

Ok, so back to food. This recipe contains quinoa (as do some of my others in the archives) so it’s not strictly ‘paleo’…. GASP! Send the paleo police round, I am sure I can convert them with this deliciousness anyway and seriously, a bit of quinoa here & there isn’t what is causing the global obesity, diabetes and heart disease epidemic we are fighting is it? Substitute it for something else if it offends you or you don’t tolerate it.

375g dried figs, soaked in boiling water for 15 mins, then drained
250g coconut oil (or butter or ghee)
125g pumpkin seeds
125g sunflower seeds
150g quinoa flakes
1/4 cup honey (or maple syrup/ rice malt syrup/ coconut nectar)
1/4 cup tahini (or nut butter of your choice)

Melt together the coconut oil, honey & tahini. Once melted transfer to a food processor with the soaked figs & blend until a smooth paste forms. Add remaining ingredients and process until just combined (you can do that by hand if you like). Transfer the mix into a baking paper lined tray (I used a large rectangular slice tin), press down evenly and pop it in the fridge for a few hours to set before slicing into bars or squares. This freezes really well and is a great option for school lunch boxes or a sweet treat when the mood strikes you.

Whole Roasted Cauliflower

I love cauliflower, even though it does smell like fart sometimes…..My research tells me that fart-smell of cooked cauliflower is actually due to the sulfur containing compounds in it that are exacerbated by cooking. The good news is, that even though it might be a bit on-the-nose, cauliflower & other cruciferous veggies are powerhouses of nutrients and brilliant for supporting detoxification of our body. You will be pleased to know that this recipe didn’t result in a stink-filled kitchen. Boom. Go make it.

1 tsp turmeric powder
Good pinch of salt
& cracked pepper
1/2 tsp garam marsala
1 cup coconut yoghurt (or full fat natural yoghurt)
Head cauliflower, stalk trimmed & leaves removed

Preheat the oven to 180C. In a bowl mix all ingredients except the cauliflower to combine well. Using your hands (or some sort of implement if you are feeling fancy), rub the yoghurt mix over the cauliflower to completely coat it. Place on a baking paper lined tray or in an oven dish & bake for 30-40mins until cooked through. It will depend on the size of your cauliflower how long this takes, it could take an hour. Pop a knife in the middle of it to test if it is ready, it should feel like a ‘ripe pear’ in terms of firmness.

Choc Gingerbread Fudge

This is stupid easy. Like even a total kitchen muppet can nail this recipe. It only has 4 ingredients, you can substitute the Buttered Up for some other nut or nut-free butters of your choice. Obviously it won’t be as awesome as my Buttered Up version but you do what you need to to get this fudge in your mouth.

1 jar Buttered Up No-Nuts Gingerbread Flavor (190g)
1 jar Buttered Up Chocolate Cake Batter Flavor (190g)
16 fresh dates, pitted
4 tbs coconut oil

Add the Gingerbread Flavor to the food processor with 8 of the pitted fresh dates and 2 tbs coconut oil and blend until a smooth paste forms. Press this into a small baking paper lined tray (I used a mini loaf tin) and press down to an even layer. Pop this in the freezer to start to set. Add the Chocolate Cake Batter flavor to the food processor with the remaining dates & coconut oil & blend again to a smooth paste. Press this on top of the Gingerbread layer to form your second smooth layer then pop it in the fridge to set for a few hours. Once set, I drizzled mine with a bit of Buttered Up melted Nothing But Coconut butter because I can, and it’s delicious. You can leave that bit out or drizzle with some melted dark chocolate. Slice into squares and store in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer.

Turmeric Tea

Wait! Wait! Before you run away! I promise it is waaaaayyyy more delicious than it sounds and, not only that, this gear is a real SUPERFOOD… Or SUPER DRINK I guess. The first time I gave this a crack I went way too overboard with the turmeric & the coconut milk….. It was kind of like a curry-cup-a-soup……. And not in a good way. This version is good! It’s creamy, and spicy & just the right amount of sweet. It is brilliant to help support gentle liver detoxification, settle an upset tummy and is a super powerful anti-inflammatory.

Turmeric has been shown to help with everything from diabetes, altzheimers, boost the immune system, improve skin, reduce cholesterol, decrease inflammation, improve liver function and even help prevent cancer. Seriously, if turmeric could just make me dinner it would really be the ultimate partner! You can read more about how freaking awesome turmeric is HERE. Give this a whirl, if you hate it I’ll never tell you to make it again.

By consuming healthy fats (coconut milk & ghee) with turmeric you increase it’s absorption, and, the addition of pepper to turmeric increases your bodies ability to absorb it’s amazing goodness by up to 2000%! Yowsers! Don’t scrimp on that pinch of black pepper people!

Makes 2 cups

2 heaped tsp fresh grated turmeric
1 heaped tsp fresh grated ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1-2 tsp honey
Pinch black pepper
1 cup coconut milk (or milk of your choice)
2 cups boiling water
2 tbs gelatin (optional) – I use THIS BRAND from iHerb and you can get $10 off your first order with the code GBD599

Add the ginger, turmeric, pepper, cinnamon and honey to a pot and add the boiling water. Allow to steep for about 5mins. Add remaining ingredients & bring to the boil while whisking to make it creamy & frothy! You could also use a stick mixer to get it nice & frothy. I do mine in the thermomix. Once it’s hot enough you can strain it through a tea strainer into your mugs. I have also made a BULLETPROOF version by omitting the coconut milk & adding 2 tbs ghee and 2 tbs of coconut oil plus an extra cup of boiling water and blending until frothy & creamy. It is delicious too! Enjoy.

Buttered Up

Have you been ‘Buttered Up’ yet? You really should get ‘Buttered Up’. Or maybe you should ‘Butter Up’ someone else? Are you with me? No? Let me enlighten you. I have just started making my own range of deliciousness in a jar! You are probably going to want to get it in your gob ASAP.

‘Buttered Up’ is the new range of nut and nut-free butters by ME in stock NOW at Primal Pantry. Yahoo. Whoop-dee-do! The range has started with a nut-free Gingerbread Butter, a Coconut Choc Chip Butter & a Chocolate Cake Batter flavour. All are gluten free, dairy free and paleo approved.

Whether you eat these right off a spoon from the jar or use them as a replacement for nut butter, butter or coconut oil in your baking, you won’t be disappointed. Great to have on hand as a snack when you need something quick & easy, or used however you like to use peanut butter or Nutella! Smear that gear on whatever you fancy, add to your recipes & mine and make sure you share the love so we can all find more ways to be #butteredup.

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Hot Choccy

It’s hot chocolate kinda weather today so here you go. Chocolate fiends pay attention NOW! On our recent trip overseas Trav & I became mildly addicted to Italian Hot Chocolate…. Trav more so than me, he even had a tantrum after we trekked halfway across Paris to get what someone online had touted as ‘Paris’ best hot chocolate’, only to find that the shop was no longer there. It’s was the kind of hot chocolate that you want to eat with a spoon it’s so thick but I am fairly certain it was NOT even slightly nourishing and loaded with sugar & God knows what else.

This version contains some awesome healthy fats, antibacterial, anti microbial & anti fungal properties from the coconut cream, a cracker dose of magnesium from the raw cacao & super dark chocolate & the gelatin provides a nice protein boost and is brilliant for the health of our skin, hair, nails, digestion, immune system & joints. It is like dessert in a mug.

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Lemon Cheesecake Balls

Remember the time I made that Probiotic Nut Cheese that was like a vegan/paleo version of cream cheese? Well, I also did you a mighty great favour & made some delicious cheesecake balls out of it, I’m nice like that….. Not nice enough to share them (I need them to grow the human inside me, I’m not being selfish) but I will share with you the recipe. Get these suckers in your guts, they are great for gut health with all those splendid probiotics, low in sugar and have some fabulous healthy fats. You’re welcome.

2 cups cashew cheese

Zest & juice 1 lemon
1/2 tsp vanilla powder or extract
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
2 tbs chia seeds (maybe 1-2 tbs more if your mix is too wet)
1 tbs maple syrup (or rice malt syrup) or stevia

Ok, so this is about as difficult taking a shower. You add everything to a bowl, you mix it well, you let it sit for about 10mins so the chia seeds can do their thang & absorb some moisture, then you roll them into balls & pop them in the fridge. If the mix is still too wet to roll after 10mins add the extra chia seeds & let it stand again for another 10 mins. These store well in the freezer as well. Just try & only eat one.

Probiotic Nut Cheese

Hi everyone! Obviously I am not making this recipe now because I am away on holidays overseas but seeing as though I would do pretty much anything right now for a good dose of probiotics, I thought I’d share this with you so you can get a healthy gut for me.

Our trip has been AMAZING, we have seen so many beautiful places, experienced fabulous foods & met some wonderful people but I am counting down the days until I get home to my own kitchen & can get back to nourishing my body in the way I like to.

On a side note, Trav didn’t take these pictures which is why they look rubbish…. But you get the idea.

2 cups raw cashews/macadamias/blanched almonds
Filtered
Contents of 2 probiotic capsules

In a bowl add the nuts & cover with water and leave to soak for 8hrs or overnight. In the morning, discard the soaking water & add the nuts with 1 cup fresh filtered water plus the contents of the probiotic capsules to a high speed blender/food processor & blend until smooth & creamy.

Place some muslin or cheese cloth in a sieve over a bowl. Add the cheese to the middle of the cloth, twist the cloth firmly to secure closed. Place a small weight (jar, mug, plate) on top of the closed cloth so that it is helping to weigh down the cheese and allow any excess liquid to begin to drain off. After about an hour you can add some extra weight. The firmer you want your cheese, the more liquid you will need to remove. Allow this to ferment at room temperature for about 12 hrs.

Once the fermentation has happened you can flavour your cheese if you like with fresh herbs, salt, pepper, spices, pesto etc or leave it plain. I have also used mine like a cream cheese filling for cheesecake.