Easiest paleo flatbread ever with Instant vegan savoury cashew cheese

Paleo flat bread, no fuss. And the cashew cheese… Amazing. Superfast. Nicer than any cow-based cream cheese, coming from someone who still occasionally eats dairy. Just mix it up and go… Tangy, salty, savoury, spicy, creamy, yum.

On a side note..¬† hello ūüôā

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Ingredients &  Method – serves 2-4

Super easy paleo flatbread:

Vegan pasta sauce of choice
Ground almonds
Flax seed
Generous pinch of salt

No measurements. Use mostly almonds, a tablespoon or so of flax if you like, salt (more than you think you need – bread is quite salty) , then just enough sauce to make a thick paste.

Spread the paste onto a lined baking sheet, bake at 200 degrees C for about 15 min. Allow to cool before peeling away from your liner.

Cashew cheese:

4 tbsp cashew butter
2 tbsp soy yoghurt
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp garlic oil
1/4 tsp smoked Paprika
1 tsp pomegranate molasses – do not skip, this is what makes it magic
1 tsp probiotic powder (optional)
2 tsp nutritional yeast
Salt to taste

Mix everything together
Adjust seasoning to taste

Enjoy!

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oat & banana flapjacks

This recipe was adapted from the Dietician UK website.

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Ingredients – makes one 9×13″ pan

400g rolled oats (I used 300g jumbo organic steel cut and 100g mornflake instant)
150g butter or spreadable butter, or margarine/ non-dairy alternative
2 tbsp honey or golden syrup
2 large, ripe bananas, mashed

1. Melt the honey or syrup and fat together in the microwave, in a large bowl.
2. Mix all the ingredients together
3. Spread into an oiled, parchment lined 9×13 ” pan and bake at 150 degrees C (fan). No need to preheat.
4. Half an hour later, or when the top is starting to turn golden, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before slicing. Allow to cool fully then store in an airtight container.
Enjoy!

Incredible korean style crispy green pancakes – vegan, gluten free, low carb, paleo

You know when something tastes so good you can’t resist eating it while you cook, and when you finally get to the table you forget all about things like table manners and cutlery and start tearing bits off with your hands in excitement? This is one of those things. It took me a full 15 minutes of eating before I could muster enough sense to pick up the fork. I’m stuffed now but still find myself longingly staring at the uneaten half of my third helping. Oh yes. This is one to get the fat-pants out for.

Except, it isn’t… It’s almost all veggies, with gram flour, onions, vegan kimchi  (thank you miss Maangchi!) and seasonings – apart from the oil used to fry them in there aren’t that many calories in them at all, for the way they taste. It’s like an amazing, crispy, pakora-like pancake but a billion times better… No overabundance of powdery dough, just the sweet, cruncy green veggies coated in a light layer of delicious, crisp, spicy batter… If I don’t stop describing this thing soon I’ll cave in and finish my plate. Make this. Especially if you find – as we did – a beautiful bunch of beets with greens intact that it’d be a crime to waste. They’re like kale but softer, less grassy and more sweet tasting. Although I’m sure baby kale or de-veined regular kale would work just as well.

Adapted from Maangchi’s kale pancake and kimchi pancake recipe vids on YouTube.

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Here it is next to some stir-fried veggies… Yummm

Ingredients – serves 3-4
1 large bunch of beet greens with stalks, maybe 150g, chopped
1.5 pak choi, washed, sliced
1 medium onion, diced
1 green onion (scallion), chopped
1 medium chilli pepper, de-seeded and chopped finely
1/4 tsp smoked Paprika
1/2 cup kimchi of choice (we used vegan homemade – to Maangchi’s easy recipe with soy sauce instead of fish sauce & pear instead of rice flour slurry)
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp toasted Sesame oil
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp ginger powder
1/2 tsp salt
About 3/4 cup water
Up to 1 cup gram flour, or as much as required to make a thin batter that coats everything.
Generous amount of oil to fry in (2tbsp per pancake)
Optional – toasted Sesame seeds as garnish

1. Put everything except frying oil and gram flour in a large bowl
2. Mix well then add half the gram flour, mixing and gradually adding more until a thin batter coats everything and there are a few tablespoons more of it at the bottom of the bowl
3. Heat your pan with 2tbsp oil on high, putting ladlefuls of the mixture into it when hot, then flattening them out to make a relatively thin pancake (thinner means crispier and tastier). Fry until crispy on the bottom (around 3 min) then flip using a spatula, or just using the pan if you want to show off. Cook the other side until that’s crispy too, a few more min.
4. Transfer to a plate then start the next pancake in the same way. Stack the pancakes to keep them warm as you cook. Try not to eat too many as you fry!
5. Serve immediately, topped with toasted Sesame seeds if you like.
Enjoy!

Moist, fluffy, healthy CARROT CAKE (gluten-free, refined sugar-free)

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Coconut flour cakes can be dry and disinteresting. This cake is moist, fluffy, and full of healthy things!

carrotcake

  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup natural or¬†artificial sweetener (I used a mix of sorbitol and coconut sugar)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water (or as much as necessary to make a batter. Omit if using a liquid sweetener such as honey or maple syrup)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice (to activate baking soda)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 medium carrots
  • raisins and chopped walnuts (to taste – if unsure, use 2 tablespoons of each)

1. In food processor, chop carrots finely. Add the rest of the ingredients (except the walnuts and raisins) one by one to the food processor, and blend after each addition. Stir in the raisins and walnuts.

2. Bake in 350-degree oven for 40 minutes, or until done.

This made one 9″ x 6″ pan. If you want more cake, double the recipe! However, keep in mind that coconut flour cakes have a satiety factor that wheat flour cakes don’t have.

Enjoy!

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16-minute healthy homemade tomato ketchup – sugar free, paleo, gluten free, diabetic friendly, fast, easy, yum!

Ketchup & I go way back. ¬†It’s one of those things I can’t run out of in the house, we buy a bottle before the current one finishes just to make sure we don’t go dry, at restaurants I request extra if they give too little, because I literally can’t eat some foods without it.¬†I can’t imagine eating chips (fries if you’re american), sausages or burgers without a generous serving of ketchup; I’d even put it on pizza, chicken, you name it, and I use it in some recipes for a flavour boost… All of this is exactly why what I am about to say is shocking.

I AM NO LONGER FRIENDS WITH KETCHUP.

The store bought kind that is…. Not even my absolute favourite brand. ¬†Yes Heinz original, I’m talking to you! ¬†After all the good times we had, you were keeping a nasty little secret from me – you are almost 25% sugar! what the heck?? I wan’t sugar in my CAKES, not hidden in savoury foods like you to make me pre-diabetic!! It’s you, and secret enemies¬†like you, YOU’RE the reason I cook healthy things but don’t seem to loose weight! Gah! I’m not talking to you anymore!!

Rather than sulk I googled some recipes (I still need my ketchup fix, and there’s really no reason for it to be unhealthy with all the sugar alternatives we have now). ¬†A lot of them seemed to have spices I don’t have at home, like onion powder, and wanted me to slow cook everything for 2 hours to reduce it down (who has time for that?). ¬†Well, I the one thing I always have at home which has a bunch of similar seasonings to what’s needed (and a few extra, but hey it’s all good) is vegetable stock cubes. ¬†I also didn’t want to wait for 2 hours so I thought I’d try a microwave method to thicken it up instead… if you’ve ever overheated something in the microwave you’ll know how it can completely dehydrate your food in a matter of minutes – why not use that to our advantage?

The glorious result is this… only THE BEST KETCHUP IVE EVER TASTED! Others have said how great homemade ketchup is, I now know how true that is… that depth of flavour, a taste of real tomato in that beautifully smooth, thick puree as opposed to just sugar & salt, the sharp tang and subtle flavours of the seasoning… Move over Heinz, I have found my new BFF and it promises to be as good to me as I deserve. YAY!

Look at the comparison of nutritional information (I got this by using an online recipe calorie calculator)… just look! ¬†ketchup-nut see that sugar? less than 1% in my recipe – and it tastes no less good! This is why you should make your own ketchup. ¬†Not to mention the salt and calorie count. ¬†I made a jar full in less time than it took me to cook my sausages and sweet potato chips. ¬†If you love ketchup like I do, this is definitely worth a try.

ketchup yup, I won’t be going back after this one. ¬†All that remains is to make little jars to take with me when we go out ūüôā

Ingredients – makes about 1 regular jam-jar full

500g passata (one pack)
2.5 vegetable stock cubes (ours are kinda small, use enough to make 1125ml stock -just less than 5 cups)
1/3 cup (80ml) cider vinegar
4.5g or 1 tsp Truvia (stevia sweetener in the UK. Use roughly 1/3 the amount of truvia to sugar)

Equipment-
large microwave safe glass bowl (plastic will stain, or might not be safe)
Cling film or plastic wrap
wooden, silicone or plastic spoon (not metal)
clean jar to store finished ketchup

1. Crumble the stock cubes. Put all the ingredients in a very large glass bowl and cover with cling film, piercing it a couple of times to let steam escape.
2. microwave on full power for 3 minutes. Remove carefully and stir with a plastic or wooden spoon (metal may affect the taste). Replace the cling-film and return it to the microwave.
3. Microwave on full power for another 3 minutes, then stir again, cover, and replace. It’ll be quite hot by now.
4. Microwave on full power for 5 minutes. You’ll need a pot-holder to take the bowl out, the sauce will be thicker, bubbling and probably splattered all over the cling-film and sides of the bowl. Carefully stir after letting it sit for about 30s to make sure it doesn’t splash at you. Cover again and replace.
5. Microwave on half power this time, for a final 5 minutes. By the end you’ll see a dried ring around the inside of the bowl, and the sauce will still seem more runny than ketchup but will coat a spoon once dipped in. It thickens up a fair bit on cooling. To check consistency you could put a small amount on a cool plate and see what it looks like after a couple of minutes, nuking more if needed. Just don’t overdo it!
6. carefully (it’s hot!) taste it. Adjust the balance between salt, sweet and sour to taste, adding very little of each and mixing well before tasting. ¬†I found it was easier to do this by tasting the ketchup on other food, how I’m used to¬†eating it.
7. Pour into your clean jar then allow to cool. Cover and keep in the fridge.

Enjoy!

Poached white fish with a leek, lemon & herb dressing

There are few dishes as elegant and delicious as a well poached piece of fish. ¬†Unlike other means of cooking fish which, in my experience, can be somewhat temperamental, this way is relatively foolproof because you can’t burn it or make it hard or dry, and its much less likely to become rubbery. ¬†Fish is good friends with lemon, onion (leek in this case) and herbs – the tartness and strong flavours become absorbed very easily and this particular combination somewhat masks the overly fishy taste you get with some varieties such as Mackerel. ¬†Having said that, I don’t like that fishy taste at all so we opted for lovely, clean tasting fillets of Basa instead (but any white fish will do). ¬†You can serve this immediately as a hot dish, with your favourite steamed veggies, or chill it and serve flaked on top of a nice green salad. ¬†Very versatile, and – like almost everything on this blog – fast (you can cook everything from frozen without defrosting), healthy & delicious ūüôā

For those of you familiar with poaching, you’ll probably wonder why I haven’t flavoured the poaching liquid with anything. ¬†The answer is simple – I tried it once and the fish tasted of absolutely nothing afterwards. ¬†I boiled it with fennel, onions, lemon, herbs, peppercorns, salt, you name it – and the only result was a soggy waste of all those precious ingredients (boiling lemon in any form makes the stock too bitter to be used for anything else)¬†and some rather bland fish. ¬†So in this recipe I’ve saved all the good stuff and made a hot dressing to pour over the fish later – so you can taste it all instead of tipping it down the sink.

fish-in-green-dressing

 

Three fillets, waiting to be eaten ūüôā

Ingredients – serves 2

  • 4 small or 2 large fillets of white fish, skinless & boneless (fresh or frozen – your choice)
  • 1/2 a small leek, or 1/3 to 1/4 of a large one, finely sliced
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt or himalayan pink salt, to taste
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp dried herbs of choice – we used oregano
  1. fill a large, shallow saucepan or frying pan¬†with water (no more than 1.5″ to the top though, you don’t want it overspilling when you add the fish) and bring to the boil. Once boiling, add the fish. ¬†If you’re using frozen fillets (all packaging removed first please), boil for 5¬†minutes then flip the fillets over, and lower the heat to low (or very low, and cover the pan) – however you do it the idea is to keep the¬†water barely¬†bubbling. ¬†leave it in there for another 5 minutes or so. ¬†If using fresh fillets, you’ll probably need to halve both those times. ¬†Check the fish is done by breaking it open a little in one of the¬†thickest parts – the flesh should be flaky and pure white, not translucent or firm/ hard to break apart (if it is continue to boil). ¬†Remove from the heat, leaving it in the hot water to keep it warm.
  2. in a small pot, heat the olive oil until hot. ¬†Add the leeks and stir for a few minutes, until soft and cooked. ¬†Add the garlic, herbs and salt and fry for a minute more, then remove from the heat – note, you want more salt than you think, because it has to go on that unflavoured fish. ¬†Once it has cooled for a minute, add the lemon juice and stir well – boiling lemon juice is not good as we’ve already mentioned.¬†
  3. Arrange the fillets on a warm plate, then spoon over the dressing and gently spread it over the surface of the fish.¬† Serve immediately. ¬†Enjoy! ūüôā

 

chilled avocado & cucumber soup

Now I know what you’re thinking, believe me, when I first saw this recipe I was thinking the same… “a cold soup? why on earth would anyone want to willingly eat a COLD soup? eeewwwwwwwww” (insert other expressions of distaste here)… I’d seen many recipes in the past, and no matter how great people told me they were, I wasn’t interested. ¬†Until this week, when I finally managed to overcome my prejudices and make this – one of the most incredible, velvety smooth, cooling, filling dishes I’ve ever had. ¬†Ahem… I’ll take a side of my words with that soup, to go. Think of it like a smooth pureed more subtle version of guacamole (which I love – if made correctly and not from those awful jars of bright green sludge from the supermarket it is delicious), or like a velvety thick green smoothie you eat with a spoon. ¬†The crunchy little salad on the top gives it that extra “pop” – the punchy flavours a perfect complement to the soft creaminess of the soup. This is a great dish for summer, when the sun is baking and you really don’t want to eat anything hot. ¬†And while there is more peeling and chopping than some of my recipes, there is NO COOKING WHATSOEVER, making this one of the fastest things to make on this whole blog ūüôā Adapted from a recipe by Gordon Ramsay in his Fast Food book. ¬† avocado-cucumber-soup my first time putting a big photo in – dyu like it? ūüôā Ingredients – serves 2

  • 1 ripe avocado, stoned and peeled, and roughly chopped
  • 1 large cucumber, 1/4 finely diced for garnish, the rest peeled and roughly chopped
  • a large handful of baby plum tomatoes, or one large one, finely chopped
  • 1/4 of a red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 tbsp yoghurt of choice (if using soy please make sure it has no flavour or strong aftertaste)
  • 1 pinch garlic powder
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  1. place the avocado, yoghurt, cucumber (except garnish), garlic powder, olive oil and 2 tbsp of the lemon juice in a jug blender, or a deep cup/ bowl if using a stick blender. ¬†Blend until a smooth, velvety puree has been obtained and all the lumps are long gone. ¬†Season with salt and pepper to taste – at this point it might taste a little bland but that all changes with the salad on top ūüôā
  2. prepare the salad to top: mix together the tomatoes, remaining cucumber, red onion and the rest of the lemon juice, making sure the lemon coats everything well.  Add a little salt, this helps reduce the heat of the onion and brings the flavour of the tomatoes out.
  3. Plate the soup as shown, garnishing with the salad on top.  Enjoy!