Thursday, July 24, 2014

Hip Hip HooRay! It's Asher's Birthday and My blog moving day!

I'm moving! After many years of being on this platform, I decided to take a plunge and move to my own website. Please follow me on my new journey on

I will continue to keep this site but I will be posting on the new website from now on.

A little note: I choose this day to officially announce the move because 1 year ago today, I gave birth to our little miracle son. I'm not sure where all the time went but it has been a fabulous year. I thought it would be appropriate to commemorate the birth of my new site on the same day that my son was born as well.

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Mixed Berries Orange Tea Cake

Once in a while you experiment and discover recipes that are worth keeping. This is one of them. Finding the balance between coconut flour and almond meal seems tricky at times but this cake just...takes the cake. It's very cake like and light to eat. Again, I serve it to friends who would not have guessed it's an no added refined sugar and certainly gluten free, and paleo cake. Hubby is also loving the citrus flavours. We love the citrus seller at our local farmers market. Oh, and for the first time, I used rice malt syrup just so that Asher gets to eat this too.

I really enjoy being at home and having the time to think about experimenting with different ingredients. Someone commented that I always seem to have a lot on my plate. I view it differently. I do like living life to the fullest- BUT I am also aware that there are some times that I need a little chill time as well. This is a lesson I have to learn.

It's what I think makes me who I am. A mum. An experimenter. A wife. And a whole lot of roles in between. However, I have to remind myself...

It's ok to have a cup of coffee and eat a slice of cake too!

Mixed Berries Orange Tea Cake 
1 cup of almond meal
1/2  cup of desiccated coconut
1/4 cup of coconut flour
juice of 1 whole orange
zest of 1 orange
4 eggs
1 tsp of vanilla paste
1 tablespoon of rice malt syrup or honey
3/4 cup of frozen berries
1 tsp of baking powder
pinch salt

flaked almonds to sprinkle

Preheat Oven to 180C. Line an 9inch cake tin with baking paper. Using a cake mixer, I whisked eggs, orange juice, zest, vanilla and rice malt syrup. Then I added all the dry ingredients. I fold in the berries last. Pour into the prepared tin, sprinkle flaked almonds and bake for 50 minutes.

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Lemon "Cheesecake" with Berry Topping

I'm actually quite excited with this recipe. I made this for our wedding anniversary back in April (I know! Very late in posting this!) and it was a hit for hubby and myself.

It is only recently that I am onto the band wagon of making raw desserts. It's just to increase my repertoire of creating desserts at home I guess. I love the idea of having a cheesecake without the heavy feeling in my tummy. There is NOTHING wrong with enjoying a cheesecake from time to time of course, but hey, if I could re create something at home that is healthy and nutritious, I'm in.

This require a little planning with the soaking of cashews. It is a very nutrient dense recipe- and very high in calories as well with the amount of cashews in it. Still a treat food for sure.

I am still using my trusty ken wood food processor but lately, been wondering if it is worth investing in a Vitamix or Thermomix? oh first world problems. Nevertheless, I have promise myself that I will not have another appliance unless one breaks down.

As I'm typing this, I just remembered I have a few more slices in the freezer. Oopies! I guess I know what I'm having for dessert tonight.

What do you use? Food processor? Thermomix? Or a high powered blender like Vitamix?

Lemon "Cheesecake" with Berry Topping (12 servings)

150 grams almond meal
100 grams of desiccated coconut
3 medjool dates soaked in water
1 tsp vanilla
pinch salt

500 grams of cashews soaked in water overnight
1 cup of lemon juice
zest of whole lemon
1 tsp vanilla paste
1 tablespoon of honey
1/4 cup of coconut oil melted

Berry topping
1 cup of berries
1/4 cup water
1 tsp honey
1/4 tsp of gelatine powder (mix with 1 tablespoon of water)

Make the base first.
Blitz everything up till it comes together. Press into a 9 inch lined cake tin. Fridge it while you make the "cheesecake".

Blitz all the ingredients together. Make sure it becomes like a smooth paste- not lumpy. Pour into base and freeze for around 30 mins to an hour.

Place berry topping except gelatine into sauce pan. Cook till it becomes soft. Cool and add the gelatine mixture. Pour berry topping onto cheesecake topping and freeze for a further 3-4 hours.

Defrost cake in fridge for 2 hours before serving.
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Monday, July 14, 2014

Ricotta Pancakes

 On some long weekends, or a special week day when hubby works from home, I like to go "all out" and makes some waffles or pancakes. This was one of those days.
Growing up, I would have meals with my grandmother as my parents are often home late from work. It's a big treat to be able to sit at the dinning table with my whole family together!

One of the things we like to do is to have meals as a family.  With Asher, we try to do as many meals as we can on the weekends together. Eating out in cafes or dinners at home. Asher is growing up too quick now and is fast approaching the big 1 year milestone. His meals are also changing. I'm cooking more family meals and chopping it up for him.

Pancakes are of course a winner for a little boy (and with the bigger man too). He could hold it, squash it and stuff it in his mouth. Self feeding to the best. ;)

Ricotta Pancakes (Around 8-10 pancakes)
1.5 cups of Almond Meal
3 eggs
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp of cinnamon
3/4 cup of ricotta cheese
1/2 cup of almond milk

Whisk everything up together. Heat pan up and pour in a ladle of batter. Flip when bubbles appear.

I had mine with berries compote, some sliced bananas and a dollop of greek yogurt.

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Thursday, July 10, 2014

The Best Banana Bread

I am always in search for ideas for snacks and breakfasts for my two favourite boys. One of my favourite blogs Whole Food Simply always inspire me to make better baking goods for my family.

I did quite a few adaptations to suit us as usual. I have experimented a few times and I think this version came out the best. It's simple, and more importantly, full of protein, and nourishing. I used two dates- which is plenty of sweetness for us as bananas are full of natural sugars as well. I stayed with tahini as I like the slight bitterness to counteract the sweetness. I used crushed walnuts for that extra hit of antioxidants and texture. If you like, try adding a handful of cacao nibs- we love that chocolate-like crunch.

The other reason why I like this recipe is that it uses coconut flour. Coconut flour, I believe, is under rated. It's basically coconut dried into a flour format. It is very low in sugar but very high in fibre. I think the texture is quite different from normal flour and that's why many people shy away from using it. It is also very absorbent. I would say I would use 3 times the amount of liquid to the amount of flour I use (e.g 1/3 cup of coconut flour to 1 cup of coconut milk or almond milk). I would usual also use more eggs than normal.

This recipe though- the ratio works in harmony with each other. The texture is like what a banana bread should be. I gave it out a few times and the only negative I had was that I cut my slices too thin!

How do you like your banana bread? Thick cafe style slices or thin and crispy toasted?

Asher doesn't care of course. He gobbled it up!

The Best Banana Bread (12-14 slices Or 10)
4 medium size bananas
2 dates soaked in hot water
3 tablespoons of tahini or sunflower butter or nut butter
4 eggs
1/2 cup of coconut flour
1 heaped tsp of vanilla paste
1.5 tsp of bicarb soda
2 tsp of cinnamon
juice of 1 lemon
pinch of salt

optional: handful of crushed walnuts, cacao nibs

Preheat oven to 180C. Line a bread loaf with baking paper. Put all ingredients in a food processor and bliz it. Pour into pan and bake it for around 35-40 minutes. (yup! It's that easy!!!)

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Monday, July 07, 2014

Coconut Celery Zucchini and Pea Soup

We are well and truly in winter mode. Rugs are out and hot mugs of drinks. Every week, I like to schedule in a soup for dinner.

I made this for lunch though. My friend is expecting her first child and was heavily pregnant. I thought it would be love to have a girly chat with her before the baby arrives. She and I love to exchange ideas and recipes and we had lovely conversations about using simple and down to earth ingredients rather than processed items. We laughed about how her husband still prefers sweet desserts as that is how desserts should be in his mind, and how my husband has grown to have less of a sweet tooth over time.

I wanted to make something nourishing for her. A little like our friendship. Nourishing.

There is a green smoothie and then there is a green soup. This has celery, zucchini and peas. How much more green can it get? Oh hold on, it does have red onion in it so it's not totally green. Instead of heaviness of cream, I used coconut milk for that added richness.

I picked up these vegetables from our local farmers market. The freshness shone.

Yes, of course I made extra for dinner and lunch the next day. It's a perfect plan. Lunch with a  girlfriend and dinner already done. More time for Asher for the rest of the day.

Coconut Celery Zucchini and Pea Soup (serves 6)
1 full bunch of celery chopped
3 zucchini chopped
200 grams of organic frozen peas
2 tsp coconut oil
2 red onions sliced
2 tablespoons of garlic
1 tsp of cumin seeds
1 tsp of ground ginger or fresh ginger minced
2 ltres of chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 tin of coconut milk

Saute onions and garlic in 2 tsp of coconut oil. Add all spices and cook till fragrant. Add all veges and cook till they are slightly soften. Add stock and simmer for 15 minutes. Blend with a hand blender. Strain if you like. Otherwise, reheat the blended soup with coconut milk. Serve with Coconut Bread or a grain free bread.

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Thursday, July 03, 2014

Raw Almond Chocolate Fudge

There are times where chocolate just hits a good spot. There are some pantry staples that I always stock up. The are almond butter, coconut oil, nuts and definitely chocolate.

An offer came up recently with Mayver's super spread nut butter. It's a mix of peanut, chia and almond. There were going for half price! What a treat. So I grabbed 2 bottles to give treats a go.

Mixing them up with some coconut oil and more nuts plus cacao powder, I placed it in the fridge and tadah, a protein enriched chocolate treat that is refined sugar free and good for us. They are freezer friendly as well which gives it a gorgeous crunch when you are ready to bite into them.

Raw Almond Chocolate Fudge (24 small pieces)
1/4 cup of coconut oil
1/2 cup of nut butter
1/3 cup of cacao powder
1 tsp of vanilla paste
1 tablespoon of honey
1/3 cup of silvered almonds

Beat or mix oil and butter together. Mix through vanilla, honey and cacao powder till smooth. Lastly add nuts. Pour into a lined brownie tray and freeze it for 2 hours. Slice and eat!

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