Chickpea Blondies (Vegan, DF, GF)

Chickpea Blondies (Vegan, DF, GF)

Blondie Brownies

Oh so gooey, tasty, yummy, fudgy brownie blondies..

This is an easy blend and bake recipe, so you can do it when whilst you are waiting for the kettle to boil or whilst you are making the kids lunches

The Japanese tend to use sweetened bean pastes, like red bean, in their pastries and this is a nice parallel. It has the texture of a fudge brownie and is sweet but not too sweet, making it great for a midmorning snack

This recipe is super high in protein from the chickpeas and triple use of almonds in the almond meal/flour, almond butter and almond milk. It is gluten free also with the almond flour the only flour used

Mr B has a prolific sweet tooth and he loved these and found them more satisfying in a way as they kept him fuller for longer, whilst still satisfying that sweet craving in a natural way

Ingredients

  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 2, 15oz cans of organic chickpeas
  • ¾ cup almond butter
  • 1 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp. baking soda

Method

  • Add all the ingredients into a blender and blend until well combined
  • Pour into an oiled bread tin
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean

 

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Healthy Pop Tarts (GF, DF)

Healthy Pop Tarts (GF)

Pop Tart

Who would have ever thought you could make such a thing as a healthy pop tart?? It sounds like a contradiction in terms

The pop tart for those of you who don’t know was introduced to the world in 1964 by Kellogg as a pre-baked toaster convenience food and soon became popular as a kids breakfast. It is made out of two layers of pastry and has a sweet filling inside. The basic pop tart without frosting has approximately 16g sugar and 200 calories

The reason I know anything about Pop Tarts at all is due to Mr B, who recently admitted to me that when he is stressed at work he goes to the vending machine and liberates a pop tart. This surprised me, as Mr B is a firm believer in clean eating, and generally sticks to that during the week

I therefore decide to seek out the ultimate treat for him. A pop tart that he could eat, that would be healthy and clean but taste just as good. This recipe is adapted from Lexiscleankitchen.com and doesn’t disappoint. It has Pataya, blueberries, chia and almonds as the main ingredients and so has plenty of antioxidants. It is sweet, but the sugars are natural. The biggest difference is that unlike the shop bought version, it wont outlast a nuclear incident, but given how quickly Mr B ate them, that was rather unlikely anyway!

Ingredients

For the tart

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 1 large egg

Homemade Chia Jam

  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. chia seeds

For the glaze

  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. cashew milk
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. pataya powder

Method

  • To make the dough, combine all the ingredients in a blender and leave to chill in the fridge (very important)
  • To make the jam, put all the ingredients in a deep pot and cook on a low heat until broken down, be careful not to burn
  • Turn off an let cool
  • Combine the glaze ingredients and set aside
  • Between two pieces of parchment, gently roll out the dough and cut out rectangles using a sharp knife
  • Place half the rectangles on parchment paper, place a teaspoon of the jam in-between, wet the edges and press down with a fork to close
  • Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to chill and preheat the oven
  • Once the oven is hot, bake the tarts for 12-15, until golden brown. Let cool
  • Once cooled use a pastry brush to add the glaze
  • I added the pataya later after brushing first so that I had two different colours and used the glaze as a drizzle

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Vegan Chorizo Empanadas

IMG_8376

Vegan Chorizo Empanadas

This was the most popular dish at my vegan Mexican feast and my guests didn’t believe the filling was not actually made with chorizo. I made 24 for six people and we had just a couple left over. Mr B, said he was dreaming about these all night and so we ended up having the rest for breakfast the next day!

The trick to this dish and any meat substitute is to impart the flavours of the dish you are impersonating. For the chorizo therefore the balance of smoky paprika and chilli for the subtle smoky spicy undertone, is the key. Don’t be afraid to be bold with the spicing as you’ll be wrapping these babies with a blanket of puff pasty and so will have to get through that first to get to the flavor

These are great for breakfast, lunch or dinner, as Mr B will attest, as well as holding up well during travel, for a picnic or packed lunch

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 lb. vegan mince
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tsp. oregano dry
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp. chilli powder
  • ½ tsp. salt or more to taste
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • ½ cup. Vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp. raw sugar
  • 4 sheets of puff pastry
  • Water and almond milk for glazing

Method

  • In a medium skillet heat the coconut oil
  • Add the vegan mince, sauté for a few minutes, add onions and garlic and continue cooking until the onions are soft and translucent
  • Add the oregano, cumin, smoked paprika, chilli powder, salt, pepper, vegetable broth and sugar
  • Cook for 10-15 minutes till the broth is gone
  • Add more smoked paprika or chilli powder to taste
  • Preheat the oven to 350f/250c
  • Working with one puff pastry sheet at a time, roll it out so it is long enough to cut 6 circles in with a pastry cutter
  • Fill each with a tbsp. of the mixture, brush half of the inside of the round with water and pinch shut, use a fork to seal again on the outside which also creates a lovely picture
  • Brush with almond milk on the outside to glaze
  • Repeat with the remaining ingredients,
  • Poke wholes in the empanadas and place on a baking tray
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown
  • Serve warm or cold

Kitcheree (rice porridge) and Oyster Mushrooms

Rice Porridge

Kitcheree (rice porridge) and Oyster Mushrooms

I lived with my maternal grandmother (Bigmama) for the larger part of my childhood and she influenced so many parts of my personality in those former years, including my love of food. For my grandma food was a tool. A means to show love, a way of bringing her family together, a way of connecting to the community and a way of retaining the parts of her heritage she had left so far behind.

One of the first memories I can recall from living with Bigmama was the incense she used to use with prayers at 4am in the morning. Scents of earthy sandalwood would enter my dreams, taking me to enchanted places as the sun started to rear its head over the horizon.

At 6am, the smell of poppy seeds being tempered in ghee (clarified butter) would start making it’s way up the stairs and into my coax me awake, signalling the start of a new day. By the time I got down the stairs the table would be set with chutneys, all different type, spicy carrot, sweet mango and sour tamarind, as well as different types of poppadum’s, fried, baked, flat, round, all giving a different texture when mixed in with the kitcheree. As we sat and mixed up our porridge my grandma would talk about her life before coming to the UK, bringing up her children and the shop she had run, where she would import food from all over the world, creating a liturgy of foodie children.

This is an ode to that wonderful warming porridge, with a modern twist using mushrooms, since I haven’t quite developed my chutney or poppadum recipes. I’ll never replace the conversations, but Mr. B tries pretty hard and I love him for that.

Ingredients

Porridge

  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • ¼ cup split green moong dal
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp. Ghee or oil
  • 2 tsps. Mustard seeds

Oyster Mushrooms

  • ½ pound oyster mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed

Method

  • Soak the rice and dal together for an hour
  • Bring to the boil with 4 cups of water, skim the white foam off the top
  • Add salt and leave to simmer, c. 30 minutes
  • Cook till you get a soft texture and taste to add more salt if needed
  • Mash with a potato masher or the back of a spoon
  • Heat oil/ghee in a separate pan and add the mustard seeds, when they crackle add them to the cooked porridge
  • Mix it and serve hot
  • For the oyster mushrooms, heat the oil with the garlic to infuse the flavour into the oil
  • Place the oyster mushrooms in the pan. Keep in one place in the pan for 3-5 minutes until to braise and add colour, flip once near the end of cooking to cook the other side
  • Serve with the porridge, providing a different texture and flavour profile

Chocolate Almond Butter Oats (Vegan, Gluten Free)

Chocolate Oats

Chocolate Almond Butter Oats (Vegan, Gluten Free)

This recipe is one of my favourite porridge recipes. It takes 10 minutes in total and whilst it looks and tastes as indulgent as a gooey chocolate brownie, it is full of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals and slow energy releasing ingredients and protein, such as coconut oil and almond butter

I like to head to the gym in the morning and this is a great protein boast for when I get home. Mr. B. is less mobile in the mornings, but since this breakfast imitates the elements of a dessert, it is great motivation to coax him out of bed!

This recipe is adapted from ‘this rawsome vegan life’ blog; a blog dedicated to vegan breakfasts, desserts and smoothies

Ingredients

Oats

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 5 cup water
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp. almond butter

Chocolate

  • 1 tbsp. melted coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp. cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup

Method

  • Add the oats and salt to the water and bring to the boil
  • Turn down the heat and stir until it reaches a creamy consistency
  • Stir in the almond milk and butter
  • To make the chocolate, stir the ingredients together and drizzle over the oats