vegan

Lemon Passionfruit Cheesecake (paleo. vegan. raw)

So, funny story. I was invited to this birthday party where I knew approximately exactly 2 people. I was nervous enough about that as it was. So, I said I’d make a cake. Sure way to make friends and influence people right? Give them cake. Oh no, I think that’s booze. Should have taken booze. Not cake. Anyway, I wasn’t sure if the rest of the party peeps were going to be “into” my healthified Paleo, vegan, sugar-free, dairy-free, gluten-free, raw cheesecake. In hindsight the odds were NOT in my favor but I carried on on my merry cake-making way oblivious to the fact that this could be a total fail and I could leave the party with approximately exactly zero friends. Just before the cake came out there was much conversation about how someone had previously made a Paleo cake for one of the kids’ birthdays and it was allegedly the WORST CAKE EVER. Like in the entire world. The kids were still talking about it a year on and were begging not to be exposed to Paleo cake ever again in their lives. At this point I am panicking and trying to work out how I am going to run away, with or without my cake, without anyone noticing. Instead I cracked open a bottle of Bollinger….. Because champagne fixes everything and if I was about to have a disaster-chef moment I might as well………Fast forward to the cake. They ate it, they liked it, there was even second servings. They could have been lying to me but I didn’t see anyone spit it in the garden so I’m calling this cake a success. 

Base

12 fresh pitted dates

1/2 cup coconut (shredded or desiccated)

1 cup macadamias (or nut of your choice)

2 tbs coconut oil

Filling

3 cups raw cashew, soaked for 2-4 hrs then drained

1 cup full fat coconut cream

1 tsp vanilla powder or extract

1/2 cup maple syrup (you could use honey, rice malt, coconut nectar)

2 lemons, zest & juice

3-4 passionfruits

Line the base of a springform tin with baking paper and grease the sides with coconut oil. In your food processor pulse together all the base ingredients until the form a rough dough. Press into the bottom of the tin and pop into the fridge. * You could bake the base if you wanted to. I have done that before and it’s delicious. 10 mins on 200C then pop in the freezer to cool completely before you top with the filling.*

paleo cheesecake base

Add the cashews and coconut cream to the food processor & blend until smooth. Add all remaining ingredients except the passionfruit and blend again well to combine. Pour this mixture over the base and pop it in the freezer for at least 4 hrs to set. Top with the passionfruit before serving. Allow to stand out of the freezer for 10 mins before cutting.

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Caramel Protein Bars (paleo, vegan)

You’ll never guess the secret ingredient in these bars….. Seriously, it’s weird, even for me. It’s a sneaky veggie. Cauliflower. Yep, I’m serious. Told you it was weird. Weird, but strangely delicious and quite frankly I am LOVING the fact that this has veggies in it so hard right now. I mean it’s basically a salad now. Right? Pass me that tray of salad.

300g steamed & cooled cauliflower

200g raw cashews, soaked for at least 2 hrs then drained

200g medjool datess

Dark chocolate (for dipping)- I used Lindt 90% but you can use this recipe to make your own if you prefer

2 tbs mesquite powder (optional but delicious)

2 tbs tahini

2 tbs rice malt syrup/maple syrup/honey/coconut nectar

1/2 cup Only Nutrition Vanilla Protein (or protein of your choice)

Add the dates, cashews & cauliflower to a food processor or high speed blender and blend until smooth. Add all remaining ingredients except the dark chocolate and process again until it forms a dough. If it’s still a bit wet, add an extra 1/4 cup protein at a time until you get to a ‘bliss ball’ type consistency. Press into a baking paper lined tray and pop in the freezer to set for 1-2 hrs. Once the slice has set you can melt your chocolate and pop it in a bowl for dipping. Cut the slice into bars, dip in the chocolate and place back into the freezer to reset. If you have leftover chocolate, you can do a second dip because let’s face it, one layer of chocolate is never sufficient. If you can’t be bothered with the dipping bizzo you can just pour the melted chocolate on top before you slice it into bars. I store these in the freezer to maintain a good consistency….. and to hide them from myself.

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Mango Coconut Protein Ice Creams (paleo, primal, gluten free, dairy free, vegan)

Um it’s been eleventy-ten million degrees in Brisbane this week. 4000% humidity, 0% oxygen. Not. Even. Kidding.  Ice creams is pretty much all I have wanted to eat and luckily these bad boys are super easy & very versatile and will cool you down asap. The biggest problem is thinking ahead to make them but if you just go ahead and make them now you’ll be good to go. 

Feel free to go rogue and choose your own adventure with flavours here. I’m think banana & almond butter would be MIND BLOWING but you can substitute in any fruits and veggies you like. 

Layer 1

2 cups coconut cream
1/2 tsp vanilla powder or extract
1 tsp honey/rice malt/maple syrup (optional)

Layer 2

350g mango
3/4 cup coconut cream
1 scoop ONLY NUTRITION VANILLA PROTEIN (optional)
1/2 cup shredded coconut

You will need some ice block moulds or some sort of vessel you can whack a paddle pop stick in to make it an ice block. Use your creative genius and let me know what you come up with.

Mix the ingredients for layer one together well & half fill your ice block moulds then pop this straight in the freezer to start to set while you make the next layer.

For Layer 2, add all the ingredients to your food processor or high speed blender and blitz until smooth. Pour on top of layer 1, whack the Popsicle stick in and let the freezer work its magic. That’s it. 

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Super-Simple Paleo Choc Chip Cookies 

Choc chip cookies with 4 ingredients! Say whaaaaatt?!? I know. How is that even possible? Well it’s not only possible, I’d go as far as to say these are the best choc chip cookies ever….. And I’ve eaten a few (hundred) cookies in my time. They are crispy on the edges and chewy in the centre and they make a totally kick-ar$e ice cream sandwich. What more could you want from a cookie? Just a community service announcement, you are going to want to hide these from yourself once they are done or feed them to others because otherwise you will consume approximately 14 cookies. This recipes makes approximately 14 cookies depending on how much dough you eat. Would it be wrong to eat them all at once? Asking for a friend. Obviously. 

2 cups almond meal/hazelnut meal 

4 tbs honey/rice malt syrup/maple syrup/ coconut nectar

3 tbs ghee/butter/coconut oil

1/2 cup dark choc chips (or whatever kind of choc chips floats your boat)

Preheat oven to 170C. Add the almond meal & choc chips to a bowl. Add the ghee & honey to a mug and stir well to combine. Once that deliciousness is mixed pour it over the dry ingredients and mix them all together well until you have a dough that somewhat resembles the below image. If you use blanched almond flour you will have a lighter colored dough but don’t be racist, just use whatever you have. 

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Now, before you eat all the raw cookie dough, roll it into balls then flatten them into cookie shapes on your baking tray like so. Come to think of it, you could totally leave these as balls and eat them raw or have them as a raw cookie, or in ice cream as cookie dough…. The possibilities are endless.

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Now pop them into your preheated oven for 10-12 minutes until just starting to brown around the edges. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15-20mins. That part is essential for 2 reasons…. The cookies need time to set as they cool &, perhaps more importantly, that business will burn the cr@p out of your tongue straight from the oven. These will keep really well in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer. They would also make a brilliant ice-cream sandwich. Just saying.

Apricot Coconut Balls (paleo. primal. vegan)

So here’s the thing. This recipe was a throw together for funsies that ended up taking a pretty good pic and tasting really freaking good….. Except I didn’t write anything down. To be honest, by the time I found the photo on my camera I had completely forgotten what I had used apart from apricots & coconut. My recipe at that point read something along the lines of this…..

Apricots- some, coconut- no clue: choose your own adventure, cacao butter?- did I or didn’t I? Surely there was other ingredients? What the hell were they? Anyway, I made them again because I am nice like that. You’re welcome. 

200g dried apricots

100g coconut

70g Cacao butter (you could try substituting for coconut oil or ghee) 

1/2 tsp cinnamon 

1/4 cup coconut flour/almond meal/protein powder

Dark chocolate for drizzling- optional (let’s be honest, when is chocolate ever optional?) 

Ok so the method. Melt the cacao butter. Grab your food processor. Whack the apricots, cacao butter & coconut in and blend until it starts to come together like a dough but still a bit chunky. Add the cinnamon & coconut flour & pulse a few times to combine. If it’s still a bit wet to roll into balls yet just whack it in the freezer for about 10minutes then roll into balls. Melt the chocolate, drizzle it over the top then pop those bad boys in the fridge to set. These can be stored in the fridge or freezer depending on your level of willpower. 

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Very Merry 5 Minute Paleo Choccy Mousse

Through this wonderful world of the interwebs & blogosphere I have been lucky enough to meet so many bloody awesome humans and these two merry individuals are some of my faves. If you haven’t checked out The Merrymaker Sisters yet you are missing out so get on over & get merried. This recipe is from one of their awesome ebooks Make It Merry! 

This awesome recipe and loads of others you can score in the ULTIMATE AUSSIE WELLNESS BUNDLE. It’s a collection of over 35 food, health & wellness ebooks that are bundled together for ONE WEEK ONLY for $44.95. That’s over $450 worth of books. I know! Shut the front gate. Deal of the century. Better be quick, it’s for a week only. Run, don’t walk. 

serves: 4
time: 5 minutes
stuff you need

1 cup raw cashews

1 cup frozen berries (or any frozen fruit)

1/4 cup coconut milk

1/4 cup raw cacao powder

3 tbs. coconut oil

1 tbs. 100% maple syrup or raw honey

1 tsp. 100% vanilla extract

now what

Place all of the ingredients (except the berries) in to your blender or food processor (we use our Vitamix).

Whiz for 3 minutes or until super smooth.

Now add your frozen berries and whiz for another minute. It will start to instantly turn in to this amazing choccy frozen mousse!

merrymaker tip…
This is a super easy sweet treat, make it a little fancy and serve with grated paleo choccy and coconut chips!

Roast Cauliflower & Broccoli Salad

Ok, so if you have not ventured to the land of roasted cauliflower or broccoli yet you have not lived. Steamed schmeamed. Roasting is the way of the future, doesn’t take much longer than steaming it, and tastes ah-mazing. This is about to change your life. Seriously. 

Cruciferous veggies are a powerhouse of nutrition, are loaded with vitamins & fibre and are an excellent food to help support our bodies detoxification pathways. 

1/2 cauliflower, roughly chopped

1/2 broccoli, roughly chopped

1 sweet potato, cubed

2 tbs butter/ghee/coconut oil

1/4 cup chopped parsley

2 tbs hemp seeds (optional), I use THIS BRAND

Dressing-

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar or lemon juice

1/2 cup olive oil

Salt and pepper 

Preheat your oven to 200C. Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Whack the sweet potato on and add half the butter and pop it in the oven for 20mins. Pull it out, add the cauliflower & broccoli plus the rest of the butter (let’s be honest, I probably added double that amount of butter because I bloody love butter but you do whatever spins your tyres) and pop it back in the oven for about another 20mins until all the veggies are cooked. You might want to pull it out after 5-10 mins and give it a good mix around so the butter gets to spread its love. Set aside to cool while you make your dressing. For the dressing, get a small jar or container with an airtight lid. Add all the dressing ingredients & shake the bejesus out of it until it is all combined. Add the roasted veggies to a big bowl, sprinkle over the parsley, drizzle with the dressing and toss well. Finally sprinkle over the hemp seeds and serve it up. 

Strawberry Chia Pots- (Paleo, Vegan, Sugarfree)

I don’t know about you guys but I have had some pretty hit & miss experiences with the ol’ chia. I have added it to muffins & they sucked up that much moisture that they ended up tasting like shoeboxes. That’s a fail. I have made chia puddings that have had the consistency of eyeballs & the texture of snot. Obviously this was also a sub-optimal outcome.  You will be pleased to know that these pots of deliciousness are not snotty, eyeball-esque or as dry as cardboard, so go me. Feel free to leave me a virtual high 5 below.

Did you know ‘chia’ is the ancient Mayan word for ‘strength’? True story. These little powerhouses are a great source of antioxidants, fiber and a decent source of protein. There’s your fun fact for the day, make sure you share it with someone.

This serves 2….or 1. I’m not here to judge.

500ml coconut milk (or milk of your choice)

1/2 cup chia seeds

1/2 tsp vanilla extract or powder

1 tbs honey/rice malt syrup or maple syrup (optional)

1 punnet of strawberries, hulled

1/2 cup toasted coconut (optional)

In a bowl mix the chia, milk, vanilla & honey well & set aside to stand for at least 15mins to allow the chia to soak up the liquid. Pop the strawberries in a food processor & blend until they are puréed. Now stir the coconut through the chia mix, spoon into a serving bowl, top with the strawberry purée & dig in.

Mint Choc Chip Cookie Dough Balls (paleo, vegan, grain free)

So, I have just started taking my own photos, can you tell? You probably can because they are ordinary at best BUT the only way from here is up! I got a DSLR for my birthday a few weeks ago and despite having no clue what the hell I am doing, I am giving it a crack. Here’s a few tips for those who are also photographically challenged….

1. Google can show you pretty much anything, a word of caution, the search ‘best bliss ball pictures’ is not going to give you what you expect…. Or perhaps it will. Refine your language or prepare to have some images you didn’t want burned into your brain.

2. If all else fails, the ‘auto’ setting works & filters fix most things. Instagram, making bad stuff look way better since 2010.

3. The thing that has helped me the most has been THIS BOOK called Scrumptious & Styled by the awesome Caroline Potter of Colorful Eats Nutrition. Not only is the ebook stunning to look at, it takes you step by step through all the important stuff and is explained in a way even a muppet like me can understand. It is a food photography book but is completely relevant to all manner of photos. If you need help this book gets two very enthusiastic thumbs up from me.

On to the recipe for the balls.

500g raw cashews

1/2 tsp vanilla powder

35g butter/ghee/coconut oil

50g coconut

2 tbs honey/rice malt syrup/maple syrup

1/2 cup raw cacao nibs (Or Choc chips) 

4 drops doTERRA peppermint oil

Blend the cashews until they turn into a flour-like consistency, add the butter, honey, peppermint oil & blend until a smooth dough. Add the coconut & cacao nibs & pulse to combine. Roll into balls & store in the fridge or freezer. That easy. Not even kidding. Go forth & dough ball.

Chocolate Frosting Fudge (Paleo, Vegan)

You know the best bit about making a cake….. Licking the frosting bowl. It’s like the cake is really just a vehicle for an appropriate way to eat frosting. There is something so friggen delicious about that buttery, sugary, creamy business.  The cr@p out of a packet ALWAYS tastes the best too! Like that Betty Crocker pre-made frosting…. Must be all that delicious hydrogenated cottonseed & soybean oil (translation- trans-fat cocktail) and corn syrup! Well, no more my friends because I care about your guts & mine & ain’t nobody got time for eating that highly processed chemical $hitstorm. I present to you Frosting Fudge….. It’s basically the way I have made eating straight cake frosting appropriate…. Call it fudge & voila. No problems.

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1 cup nut butter (I used roasted almond)

2 tbs raw cacao

2 tbs butter or ghee (you can sub for coconut oil)

1-2 tbs honey (you can use maple syrup, rice malt or coconut nectar)

That’s it. Seriously. You blend it up. You press it into a baking paper lined tray. You pop it in the fridge to set. Now you can have your frosting & eat it too. Who needs the cake.

If you’re looking for the freshest tip offs on the Brisbane food scene, then head on over to Gourmand & Gourmet.  They’ll keep you up to date on places and happenings around town and make sure you never go hungry again.

You can find some of my recipes that they’ve published for bone brothpaleo white Christmas, and not dogs. They also have the low down on some delectable paleo eats and can tell you where to find the best paleo pork, how to get paleo meals delivered to your door, and where to settle your sweet tooth without over indulging. So get on over to Gourmand & Gourmet, and thank me later.