‘There is beauty in simplicity’
I like to make my own granola for health reasons but also for taste. I love sweet salt umami for example, so adding salt accentuates that element. Mr. B loves all things chocolate and hazelnut (Nutella), so I use hazelnuts as the nut in this mix. You can change these elements based on your own taste and you will have something just for you and your loved ones.
I honestly never thought I would be someone who made my own granola. It was something that people used to joke about, calling the more naturalistic in a crowd, ‘crunchy granola’. Looks like my inner hippy is coming out these days, making bread, granola, yogurt and pasta by hand using old fashioned granny methods and ingredients from the farmers market. I personally think maybe they had it right all along. A simple life, old fashioned values and plenty of love and respect for the ingredients and environment around you.
- 3 cups of gluten free rolled oats
- 1 cup chopped hazelnuts
- ¼ cup desiccated coconut
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 3 tbsp. coconut sugar
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/3 cup raw cacao
- ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ½ cup vegan chocolate chips
- Mix all the ingredients apart from the chocolate chips
- Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes, mixing half way through
- Take out of the oven and let cool
- Add chocolate chips and store in a glass jar….Or put a ribbon on and give to a friend
Chilli Chocolate Vegan Samosas
I was inspired to create this for a competition where we were asked to use cacao in a creative way. My first thought was to make my grandmothers samosas with a chilli chocolate slant on them. (Mr B’s influence as two of his favourite flavour profiles). I wasn’t sure this would work, but I felt my grandma was urging me on, if only to see me make my first samosa
Well it did work and I’d encourage you to give it a try. It has some wonderfully deep, rich flavours from the garam masala and chilli, with an earthy tone from the cacao and smoked paprika
‘Creativity is the courage to let go of certainty’.
I didn’t want to let go of the certainty of my grandma’s recipe, but this competition pushed me out of my comfort zone and to something new in our relationship. A collaboration of sorts, a recipe created hand in hand, partly from heritage and partly from something new. Growth isn’t just a case of learning something new but about unlearning old limits too
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tsp. chilli powder (adapt to heat preference)
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp. garam masala
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 500g vegan mince
- 20g cacao powder
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tsp. flour
- 2 tbsp. water
- 10 spring roll wrappers
- Heat the olive oil, add the onion and fry till translucent, add garlic and fry for 30 seconds
- Add spices for 30 seconds
- Add vegan mince and stir till equally distributed
- Cook down for 20 minutes
- Taste and adjust for seasoning
- Let cool
- Mix the water and flour together to use as a glue for the samosa pastry
- Fold, fill and seal (see picture for instructions)
- Bake or fry and serve with a coriander dipping sauce
Fancy Four Ingredient Chocolate Tart (Vegan)
A friend of mine wants to make this before the weekend, so you get an extra recipe this week. You should all make it, as it’s an easy blender recipe with only 4 ingredients!
I served this at my Mexican dinner party as a light dessert and my guests thought it was made with cream. If you want to create more of a Mexican accent, add a pinch of chilli powder to the blender to end your night with a bang!
Needless to say, Mr B ate his portion and all the leftovers!
- 1 pack of silken tofu
- 100g vegan chocolate
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- Vegan pie shell
- Preheat the oven to 350F/250c. Cook the pie shell till golden brown
- In the mean time, press the tofu against a sieve and squeeze as much water as possible out of it
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl over some hot water
- Put the tofu in a blender and when you get a silky texture (like cream) add the melted chocolate and vanilla extract and blend until fully combined
- Once the pie case is baked, let it cool down, once cooled add the chocolate mixture
- Place in the fridge for a couple of hours to set and decorate in whatever way takes your fancy
- (If you want to make the base yourself, mix a cup of walnuts and a cup of dates in a blender with a pinch of salt and press down in the tin)
Raw Vegan Chocolate Truffles
This recipe will blow your mind and challenge you taste buds.
My official tasters thought the truffles tasted as if they were made with cream and couldn’t believe that they were actually full of protein and antioxidants
They don’t take much time or process and you can roll the base in different coatings to make a variety of flavours, just like your favourite chocolate box
I took inspiration for this recipe from one of my favourite blogs, Dates and Avocado’s. Lore Salas has such an amazing eye for detail and has inspired so many of my dessert recipes. After being on instagram for a long time, she has just started a blog and I’d encourage anyone with a sweet tooth to check it out!
Mr. B rating for this one, 12 out of 5, so I know what to make when I need to convince him to do something! Bribery always works!
- 1 cup almond butter
- ½ cup melted cacao butter
- ½ cup cacao powder
- ¼ cup + 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
- Pinch sea salt
- Cacao nibs
- Matcha Powder
- Chopped nuts
- Or eat on its own
- Blend the almond butter, water, maple syrup, vanilla extract and salt in a blender until you get a nice smooth paste
- Stream the melted cacao butter and cacao powder, last
- Pour the batter into a bowl and refrigerate until firm (at least 1 hour)
- Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls
- Roll each ball into the topping of your choice
- Place in the fridge, they should keep for a few weeks, or a few seconds if Mr. B. knows they are there
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
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 5 cup water
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- ¼ cup almond milk
- 1 tbsp. almond butter
- 1 tbsp. melted coconut oil
- 1 tbsp. cacao powder
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- 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
Gorgeous Gooey Black Bean Brownies
Why would I want to eat a healthy brownie, when I could eat a rich, deep, gooey chocolaty brownie instead?
What if this was one and the same thing?!
Introducing the gluten free, flour free, dairy free, nut free brownie. It is super easy and takes around 20 minutes, using my trusted blender.
The secret ingredient here is undetectable, as per my trusted tasters and with black beans as the main ingredient, you can be rest assured that you have had at least one of your five a day!
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 tbsp. raw cacao
- ½ cup oats
- ¼ tsp. salt
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. gluten free baking powder
- ½ cup vegan chocolate chips
- Pre-heat the oven to 350c
- Combine all the ingredients, except the chips, into the blender
- Stir in the chips and pour into a cake pan, sprinkle some extra chips over the top
- Place in the oven for 15 mins and let cool for at least 10 mins before serving
- If a little soft when you take it out of the oven, place in the fridge and the brownies will firm up
Black Beans (above)
Vegan Chocolate Mousse
This chocolate treat has three main ingredients and takes not time at all in a blender. It is dairy free, gluten free, nut free, refined sugar free and high in protein. It has a deep, decadent texture and ‘you won’t believe it’s made of tofu’, which is a wonderful ancient healthy ingredient that takes on the taste of whatever you are making. Here it is really used for the silky texture and in blind tastings no one would ever guess it is the main ingredient.
I like to serve it with lots of berries to cut through the richness of the mousse, it also adds a little color to the plate. I have also added a little gold fairy dust here, for a magical finish.
- 300g soft silken tofu
- 80g vegan chocolate
- 3 tbsp. maple syrup
- ½ tsp. vanilla essence
- Pinch of salt
- Melt the vegan chocolate using a heat proof bowl over a pot of hot water, don’t let the bowl touch the water
- Stir the chocolate until it melts completely and then take it off the heat to cool for a few minutes
- In the mean time, prepare the tofu by taking it out of the packaging, squeeze a little to get rid of some of the water, then blend till smooth
- Add the chocolate and rest of the ingredients
- Transfer into glasses or ramekins, serve with berries to cut through the richness