Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Orange Pancakes with Dark Chocolate Chips

I know...yet another pancake recipe. But I ask you, can you really ever have too many awesome pancake recipes? Exactly.

These pancakes are super fluffy pillow pancakes, with zingy orange zest complemented with deliciously dark chocolate. Pssssst...they're also gluten free!

Makes 6 small pancakes

1C gluten free self-raising flour (I use Dove's Farm)
3/4-1C almond milk
1Tbsp ground flax seeds
1Tbsp vanilla sugar
1Tbsp vegetable oil
1 orange - zest & juice
6tsp dark chocolate chips

In a small mixing bowl combine the flour, flax and sugar. Add the wet ingredients and mix until smooth and thick (you should have to spread the batter a little when you spoon it into the pan) Fold in the zest and place a pan over a medium heat.
Spray pan with cooking spray and spoon heaped tablespoons of batter, spreading the batter out a little, into the pan. Sprinkle over 1 teaspoon of chocolate chips per pancake. Fry for around 2 minutes and then flip over and cook for a further minute.
Serve with a squeeze of fresh orange juice and a nice cup of coffee.

Enjoy xo

What's your favorite breakfast food?

Monday, 25 February 2013

Banana Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

I'm going to keep this simple. 
Frozen Bananas + Almond Milk = Ice Cream

There are many different flavor combinations that you could try, and I kept it simple by adding a tablespoon of peanut butter and a handful of dark chocolate chips.

Makes 2 large servings

2 large bananas
1/4C almond milk
1T maple syrup
1 heaped tablespoon smooth peanut butter
A handful dark chocolate chips

Roughly chop the bananas and place them in a blender. Add the almond milk and blitz until everything is smooth. Add the peanut butter and blitz for another 30 seconds. Transfer to a freezer safe tub and fold through the chocolate chips. Freeze for 4-5 hours, stirring every hour.

Enjoy xo

-What's your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Friday, 22 February 2013

Tahini Chai Granola with Cranberries & Maple

Granola that contains chai, tahini and cranberries. I'm in heaven.
And if you make it, you'll be in heaven too.

Packed with fiber, fatty acids and a huge bundle of protein in the form of my faithful friend tahini, this granola will not only fill you up until lunch time, but will pack you full of nutrients and all the stuff you need to have a cracking day!

Once you see how easy it is to make granola at home, you won't bother paying out for the store bought version! Bonus - you know exactly what's in this, and there ain't no rubbish!

Recipe adapted from here
Makes a huge batch! At least 10 servings

3C jumbo oats
3/4C sunflower seeds
1/4C ground flax seeds
1/4C chia seeds
1/2C hazelnuts
1/2C brown linseeds
1 heaped tablespoon mixed spice
2 heaped tablespoons ground chai tea*
A dash of salt
1/2C tahini (unhulled is best)
1/3C pure maple syrup
3/4C dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 275 and line a large baking tray with grease-proof paper.
In a large mixing bowl combine all the dry ingredients (apart from the cranberries) and mix well. In a small bowl mix the tahini with the maple syrup until smooth and pour into the dry ingredients.
Mix well, until everything is evenly coated and the mixture is quite chunky.
Pour onto the baking tray and spread the granola mixture out evenly. Bake for 30mins in the center of the oven, stirring the mixture every 10mins to ensure an even crisp.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely. Once cooled stir through the cranberries and transfer to an airtight container to store.

Serve with your favorite dairy free milk or yogurt (or even ice cream if you're feelin' fancy) and a drizzle of agave or maple.
Enjoy xo

*I ground the tea from two chai tea bags in a pestle and mortar, but you could also use a coffee grinder.

-What's your favorite type of granola?

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Banana Bread Pecan Pancakes

Aren't pancakes one of the best breakfast foods ever!?
I honestly don't know anyone who can say no do a gorgeous stack of hot pancakes drizzled in maple syrup, and if there are such people, I don't know if I want to know them.
My point is: Pancakes are the bomb.

But healthy? Hmm...
Pancakes usually have at least a small amount of oil in them, along with sugar and white flour, therefore making them not so healthy or good for you. 
But that doesn't have to be the case! 

These Banana Bread Pancakes are made with buckwheat flour, have no oil and no sugar! (But they're still pretty darn delicious) They've even got flax seeds for a healthy dose of fibre, omega 3 and a whole host of other nutrients! 

So what are you waiting for? 

Makes 6 small or 3 large pancakes

1 large banana
1/2C wholemeal buckwheat flour
1tsp mixed spice
1Tbsp ground flax seeds
1/2-3/4C unsweetened almond milk
2Tbsp chopped pecans

Maple syrup, strawberries & extra pecans to garnish

In a small mixing bowl mash the banana with a fork. Add the flour, spices & flax and mix. Add the almond milk and mix until well incorporated. Fold in the chopped pecans. The mixture should be quite thick.

Spray a frying pan with cooking spray and place over a medium heat. Drop heaped tablespoons of the batter into the frying pan and spread out with the back of the spoon. Fry for around 2mins on one side, and then using a spatula flip them over and cook for a further minute. Once all the pancakes are cooked, stack them up on a plate, drizzle over some maple syrup, and finish with chopped nuts and some fruit.

Enjoy with a nice cup of coffee or some chai tea!

-What's your favourite type of pancake?

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Coconut Breakfast Risotto with Cherries & Cinnamon

One of the reasons I love using Instagram is for the incredible amount of inspiration I get for recipes and flavour combinations on a daily basis. This recipe was inspired by the lovely Chelstradamus to make this sweet breakfast risotto. 

I used creamy coconut milk and sweet cherries to make this dish a deliciously decadent breakfast.
Go on, you deserve a little decadence.

Serves 2

1/2C risotto rice
1 tin of light coconut milk
1tsp cinnamon
2tsp coconut palm sugar
6 cherries, pitted and sliced in half
1/4C unsweetened shredded coconut 

Place a small saucepan over medium heat.
Add the rice to the pan. Add half the coconut milk and stir continuously until it is absorbed by the rice. Add the second half of the coconut milk, along with the shredded coconut (reserving a little to sprinkle on top), cinnamon and coconut sugar and stir continuously until the rice has plumped up and has absorbed most of the liquid. Once the rice is soft, add the cherry halves (reserving a few for decoration) and cook for a further 2 or 3mins just to heat the cherries through.

Spoon into two small dishes or ramekins and sprinkle with the reserved coconut and cherries.

This is just one flavour combination idea, here are some other suggestions: 
-Add one mashed banana and put a blob of peanut butter on top
-Add vanilla bean paste and dried cranberries
-Add 1/2tsp cocoa powder and some strawberries
-Add chai spices and pear slices

What flavour combinations would you use?

Enjoy xo

Monday, 18 February 2013

Apricot & Strawberry Cinnamon Coffee Cake

What if I told you this cake wasn't just an ordinary cake...what if I told you this cake is free from gluten, wheat, animal products and refined sugar, yet is still super delicious...

I give you this soft, sweet buckwheat cake topped with a spiced caramelised streusel topping. 

I'm trying to cut out wheat and sugar at the moment, to try and sort my health out! But that doesn't mean less baking or less blogging! I love good food, so it just means I have to be clever about the way I bake and cook! Exciting times are ahead guys! Exciting, healthy-yet-delicious times!


For the cake
1C almond milk
1tsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/4C wholemeal buckwheat flour
2Tbsp cornstarch
1tsp baking powder
1/2tsp baking soda
Dash of salt
1/2C vegan margarine
3/4C coconut palm sugar
2 small apricots, chopped
2 large strawberries, chopped

For the topping
1C coconut palm sugar
2Tbsp ground cinnamon
1/4C buckwheat flour
2Tbsp vegan margarine

Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a square cake tin with margarine or oil and set aside.
In a measuring jug or small bowl combine the milk and vinegar and set aside to curdle. In a large mixing bowl cream together the margarine and sugar until fluffy. All at once add the dry ingredients and the milk mixture and beat until smooth and any big lumps are gone. Pour into the cake tin and smooth over with a knife or the back of a spoon. Sprinkle the fruit over the batter and set aside.

Make the streusel by combining all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and, using your hands, crumbling them all together until the mixture resembled breadcrumbs. Spoon the topping onto the cake mixture and bake for 40-50mins, until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. (However the streusel mixture will be quite sticky/soft) Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before slicing and devouring.

This cake is wonderful for brunch, as it is not overly sweet and is nice and filling!
Enjoy xo

-Have any of you tried any gluten free or sugar free recipes?

Friday, 15 February 2013

Fragrant Orange Cake with Dark Chocolate Ganache

Sometimes only a loaf cake will do. Do you know what I mean?
When I'm in the loaf-cake-craving mood I would usually bake a banana bread of some sort, but today that just wouldn't cut it. Don't get me wrong, I love banana bread as much as the next person. But today I felt like trying something a little bit different, so I made this orange cake...I may or may not have been influenced by the dozen oranges that were sat in my kitchen begging to be used.

This cake is fragrant, sweet and citrus-y. 
It is extremely moist and very comforting with a nice cup of tea.

Recipe adapted from here
Makes one large or two small loaves

2C plain flour
1tsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
A pinch of salt
1 1/2C fresh orange juice
1C vanilla sugar (regular sugar will do)
1/2C olive oil
Zest of 1 orange
2Tbsp cornflour

Preheat your oven to 180. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a measuring jug mix together the sugar, oil, orange juice & zest. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.

Pour into a greased/lined loaf tin and bake for about an hour, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the pan for about 5mins and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

While the cake cools make the ganache.

10oz vegan dark chocolate
1/2C almond milk

Place the chocolate and milk in a medium pan. Heat on a medium heat, while stirring constantly. Once the chocolate has melted, immediately remove from the heat and whisk as it cools slightly and thickens. Once slightly thickened pour over to cooled loaf and leave to cool and set.

Once the ganache has set, serve a slice with a nice cup of earl grey.
Enjoy xo

Valentines Week Bake #3 - Marshmallowey Pink Meringue Cookies

*Cue sexy music*
This is for all you meringue lovers out there...
All you gorgeous animal lovers who have to forgo the meringue-y goodness of Eton mess & pavlova...
I present, my Valentines Day gift to you...
Vegan Marshmallowey Pink Meringue Cookies

Crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, these cookies will fill the little meringue shaped void in your hearts...well in your stomachs...I hope you like them!

I've heard about lots of clever ways of making vegan meringue...apparently you can make it using applesauce!? Well I'm not that clever...I've used plain ol' egg replacer! I regret nothing!

Makes about 12 large meringue cookies

1/2C Orgran No Egg
1C water
3/4C powdered sugar
1Tbsp caster sugar
1tsp vanilla bean paste
A few drops of vegan red food coloring
Heart Sprinkles (optional)

In a stand alone electric mixer (or with an electric hand mixer) mix together the No Egg and water until smooth. Then whip on high speed for around 5mins, until quite foamy. Then continue whisking while adding the sugars a tablespoon at a time, and once all the sugar has been added, whisk on high speed until the foam is stiff and holds some shape. 

Scoop heaped tablespoons onto baking sheets lined with grease-proof paper and sprinkle them with the sprinkles, if using. Bake at 130 for 1hr 30mins and then, without opening the oven, turn the oven off and leave the meringues in there to cool completely. 

Serve as they are or sandwich two together with vegan chocolate ganache for a delicious Valentines Day treat.

Enjoy xo

Valentine Week Bake #2 - Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies

It's possible that I'm in love with these cookies. Okay maybe not IN love with them...but I do love them.
Love Bake nĂºmero dos comes to you in the form of these fantastic little Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies...need I say more?

I thought I would do a step-by-step recipe for a change! Let me know what you think!

Recipe Adapted from here
Makes 12

1Tbsp ground flax seeds
2Tbsp warm water
1/3C vegan margarine 
1/3C vegan cream cheese
1/2C sugar
1C plain flour
1tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 punnet fresh raspberries

1/3C vegan cream cheese
4Tbsp vanilla sugar

1. Cream the margarine, cream cheese & sugar together in a large mixing bowl.

2. Add the dry ingredients and mix well.

3. Combine vanilla sugar and cream cheese in a small bowl.

4. Using your hands, break the raspberries into pieces and fold them into the dough.

5. Now fold through the vanilla cream cheese mixture, creating a marbled effect.

6. Spoon using an ice cream scoop onto a baking tray lined with grease-proof paper and bake at 350 for 15-20mins, until the cookies have firmed up.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool and dust with a little icing sugar.

Enjoy xo

Giant Lemon Cookies

I don't know about you, but I love citrus fruits. Lemons, grapefruits, limes...I just can't get enough!
So when I heard about these lemon cookies, I just had to give them a go!
They are tangy yet sweet, and oh so lemon-y! And ever so easy to make!
Next I want to try these but replacing the lemon with grapefruit, just to see what happens!

Recipe adapted from here
Makes 12 large cookies

1/2C vegan margarine
1C sugar
1Tbsp cornstarch mixed with 3Tbsp water
1Tbsp fresh lemon zest
Juice from 1/2 a medium sized lemon
Pinch of salt
1/4tsp baking powder
1/4tsp baking soda
1 1/2C plain flour
Powdered sugar

Cream together the margarine, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice & zest and salt. Add the flour and baking powders and mix until everything is well combined. The mixture will be quite stiff.

Spoon onto baking sheets lined with grease-proof paper using an ice cream scoop and bake at 180/350 for 15-20mins, until the edges are slightly browned.

Remove from the oven and while still on the baking sheet sift powdered sugar over the top of the cookies, and be as generous as you like! After a few minutes on the baking sheet, transfer onto a wire rack to finish cooling and serve.

Enjoy xo

The lovely @jessicahilzey on Instagram tried out the recipe and loved it!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Valentines Bake #1 - Spiced Mocha Bundt with Chocolate Ganache

Call me crazy, but I've decided to go a little bit overboard on Valentines this year! (Any excuse to bake guys!) So I'm doing a series of Valentines Bakes, the first of which being this deliciously fudgey Spiced Mocha Bundt Cake.

Dangerously chocolatey, with a cheeky hint of spice, shamelessly smothered in silky chocolate ganache. The perfect thing to charm that special someone in your life! 

On that note, I do believe that baked goods had a key role to play in the romancing of my other half. 
The first time I met him, I baked him brownies, and that was that.

So yes, baked goods are important and can clearly work miracles and cover a multitude of sins!

Recipe adapted from JoytheBaker

2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 heaped tablespoon mixed spice
1 cup strong coffee
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
small handful of chocolate chunks 

Preheat the oven to 350/180. Grease a bundt pan with vegetable oil and dust with cocoa powder.
In a large mixing bowl combine the dry ingredients. Mix the coffee with the vegetable oil and pour into the center of the dry mixture. Mix until well incorporated and then fold in the chocolate chunks. 
Pour the batter into the prepared bundt pan and bake for 35-40mins, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (Depending on your oven it could take longer.)
Leave to cool in the pan for at least 10mins and then turn out onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely. While the cake cools, make the chocolate ganache.
10oz dark chocolate
1/2C almond milk
Break the chocolate into squares and place in a medium sized saucepan. Add the milk and place over a medium heat, stirring constantly until the chocolate has just melted. Immediately remove from the heat and continue to stir while the ganache cools slightly and thickens slightly.
Pour over the cake and decorate with sprinkles!
Enjoy xo