Remember the time I made CHOCOLATE BREAD!? Well this happened on the weekend (twice) because it was so damn good. I even had to make an extra loaf of chocolate bread. I have not had French toast in YEARS people. YEARS! I forgot how freaking good this business is! Get it in your face. You won’t be sorry.
Soups are such an easy way to cram a whole load of nutrients into one bowl. You can chuck in any veggies that are still in the fridge and are starting to look a little sad or even add some leftover cooked meats. This week I had a slow cooked turmeric chicken and veggie casserole thingy that I just didn’t feel like so I threw it all in a big pot with some bone broth, heated it up, blended it to smooth & dinner was served. Using homemade BONE BROTH is a great way to get loads of minerals, calcium, magnesium and gut-healthy gelatin into yourself too, it’s super easy to make and I keep a few frozen batches in the freezer all the time. You know why your nana used to make chicken soup when you were sick? Because over 70% of your immune system is in your gut, if your gut isn’t healthy you get sick all the time! Heal and nourish your gut with nutritious homemade stock/broth to keep that immune system healthy…. See, nana’s know their $hit.
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.
You know I thought this whole ‘baby brain’ biz was just a farce….. But I am actually getting dumber by the day and am CONSTANTLY misplacing things. I lost my water bottle the other day…. Found it in the bathroom cupboard a few days later. I am not sure how I am going to function in society if this gets any worse. Anyhow, on to the food.
Sometimes, especially on Sunday nights, we have ‘breakfast for dinner’. This generally involves bacon, eggs, sautéed kale, mushrooms…. You get the gist. This week when Trav suggested ‘breakfast for dinner’ my pregnant brain went straight to pancakes. I added zucchini to them so that Pebbles (current nickname for the growing bub) was getting some veggies in too.
So I am 17.5 weeks into this pregnancy & so far things are pretty good. I had a bit of that fab old fun they call ‘morning sickness’ all day, every day up until about 10 weeks where I spent all day feeling really hungover (& mighty pi$$ed off it wasn’t even the result of some great champagne) and couldn’t stomach anything I cooked or stand the smell of things like my beloved coconut oil! Since then I have been well, no weird cravings yet & I am back on board with coconut oil and at the stage affectionately referred to as ‘the too many pies’ stage of pregnancy…… I don’t really look pregnant, just a bit fat or like I ate 7 pies for breakfast. It’s hot.
This baby won’t make you look like you just ate 7 pies, is super easy, super tasty, & makes a fabulous brekkie, lunch or dinner option. You can add any fillings you like for a high protein, low carb feast and can jam as many veggies in as you like.
1 cup PESTO (you can use any type you like)
1 cup flaxseeds, ground
2 tbs coconut oil/ghee
1 zucchini, grated
Extra 1/2 cup pesto
Anything else you would like to add to your quiche, I added sliced capsicum & sweet potato chopped into small cubes
Preheat the oven to 180C. For the base, add all the ingredients to the food processor & mix well until completely combined. Press into a greased tart tin or springform tin so that it covers the base & up about 5-8cm on the sides. Pop it in the oven for 10-15 mins until it is just firming up then remove & set aside.
Add the eggs, pesto & zucchini to a bowl or food processor & mix well to combine. Add any other ingredients you like now and stir through. Pour onto the pre-baked base ensuring the egg mix does not come up higher than the tart base on the sides. If you have extra mix left you can pour it into some muffin tins and make some mini fritattas. Turn the oven down to 160C and pop the quiche in for 45mins to 1hr or until it is firm in the centre. Once you take it out of the oven, allow to cool for at least 30mins before slicing.
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.
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
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.
The dough recipe has been adapted from Primal Girl’s Magic Dough Recipe. You are going to want to get it in you sneaky little hands because that gear is ver-sa-tile! I made pizza dough the other night with it & as much as I love a Cauliflower Base Pizza, some times you just want a real dough and that gear is brilliant!!
These buns are quite dense but super delicious and brilliant smeared with some organic butter…. It is Easter after all!
170g tapioca flour
125g white sweet potato, peeled, steamed, puréed & allow to cool to room temp
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup coconut oil (or macadamia oil/ melted ghee or butter)
1/4 cup coconut milk (or milk of your choice)
Extra tapioca flour for rolling
8 medjool dates, chopped roughly
1/4 cup sultanas
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 tbs honey/rice malt syrup/maple syrup
1/2 cup chopped Dark Choc
Preheat your oven to 190C. You can do this without a food processor but I am lazy so I didn’t. Add the sweet potato purée, spices, salt & the tapioca flour to the food processor & pulse until it turned into a crumbly mixture and all the flour is absorbed. In a separate bowl, whisk the oil, egg, honey & milk together then add that it the sweet potato mix & pulse again to combine completely. This should be looking more like a dough now. At this point you can remove the dough from the processor and dump it onto a clean bench/ baking sheet etc to knead etc. Add the sultanas, dates & dark chocolate and use your hands to knead it through to combine. If the dough is a bit sticky you can add some extra tapioca flour (1 tsp at a time) until you have a dough that you can work with that doesn’t stick to your fingers. This dough cannot be ‘over-worked’ like normal bread dough so knead until your heart’s content. If it is too dry & cracking at the edges, add extra oil, one tsp at a time. When you are happy with the consistency, line a baking tray with baking paper, shape the buns as you like (but don’t make them bigger than a regular bread roll or the inside won’t cook) and bake for 30-40mins until golden on the outside. These will still be ‘doughy’ in the centre but they are cooked through. I used melted chocolate and coconut butter mixed together to pipe my ‘crosses’ on top once the buns were cooled to room temperature.
It’s a rainy old day here in Bris-Vegas & that means it’s perfect weather to get in the kitchen & make lots of food…. Despite how it may appear from my recipe ratio of sweets to actual food, I don’t just eat cake & chocolate all day…. Not all day.
Ever noticed that dried figs sometimes taste like some sort of booze? No, it’s not because I soaked them in booze….. Or because I was chowing down on them when I was already drunk. Huh? Just me? Weird thing to say? I totally think I can taste like brandy or port or something like that in dried figs? No? Whatever. These balls taste boozy to me, let me know if you get that too.
375g dried figs
200g shredded coconut (or 200g coconut butter)
3 tbs coconut oil
1/2 tsp vanilla powder (or 1tsp vanilla extract)
Dark chocolate for dipping, I used PANA CHOCOLATE
Pop the figs in a bowl and cover with hot water & allow to soak for 10mins. Drain off the water then add the figs & remaining ingredients, except chocolate to the food processor & blend until it all comes together. If it’s too wet add a little more coconut, too dry add a dash more oil. Melt your dark chocolate any way you like, roll the fig mix into balls, dunk in the chocolate to coat then place on a baking paper lined tray. Once all done, pop in the fridge to set. You can store these babies in the fridge or hide them from yourself in the freezer like I do. If you are feeling super lazy you can just press the fig mix into a tin & pour the chocolate on top like a slice. That’s probably what I will do next time because this ball-rolling-business is time consuming and messy…. On the plus side you do end up with lots of chocolate on your fingers that you get to lick off at the end. You decide.
Raw Tarts are all the rage at the moment…. I think the vegans are largely responsible. That’s not a dig at vegans, I love this raw tart business. There is a lot of raw vegan ‘something-or-another’ kicking about in health food cafés & shops, it’s the new black, all the cool kids are doing it so I thought I’d best dip my toes in too…. To the concept, not the tart. I wouldn’t put my feet in the tart, that’s just unhygienic.
2 cups walnuts (or nuts of your choice)
12 fresh dates
1/8 cup coconut oil
2 cups raw cashews (soaked for at least an hour in fresh water, then drained)
500ml full fat coconut cream (I use the Ayam brand)
1 tsp vanilla powder or extract
3-4 tbs maple syrup, rice malt syrup or coconut nectar
1 cup berries
Fruit Layer- (optional)
2 cups berries (if using frozen, allow them to thaw first)
1 tbs gelatin (I use the Great Lakes grassfed beef gelatin)
Add the base ingredients to the food processor & blend until it forms a mixture that forms a crumbly dough. It should hold together if you pinch some between your fingers. If it’s too dry, add a couple of extra dates & an extra tbs of coconut oil. Remove this mix & press it into the base of a springform or tart tin. Set this aside. Add the cashews & coconut cream and blend in the food processor until a smooth paste forms. Add all remaining filling ingredients & blend until smooth. Adjust the sweetness as you need to. Pour this on top of the base & pop it in the freezer to start to set while you make the topping. For the fruit layer blend the berries & gelatin until smooth. Pour it over the top of the tart & return the tart to the fridge to set for 3-4 hrs before slicing.